May Is National Skin Cancer Awareness Month

May Is National Skin Cancer Awareness Month

As the month of May brings skin cancer into focus, it’s time to increase public understanding of the disease, including its prevalence, approaches to screening and prevention, treatment options, and resources that offer updated skin cancer information throughout the year.

Cancer of the skin is often divided into two categories: non-melanoma and melanoma. The American Cancer Society (ACS) estimates there are well over 1 million unreproted cases of non-melanoma (basal cell or squamous cell) cancers annually annually in the United States. Melanoma, the more-serious form of skin cancer, was expected to be diagnosed in close to 70,000 people in 2009. The ACS also estimated that appoximately 11,500 deaths would occur in 2009 from all forms of skin cancer combined (8,650 from melanoma and 2,940 from non-melanoma).[1]

Although the frequency of melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer diagnoses—as well as supposed countless undetected cases—in the United States indicate that these diseases remain significant health concerns, it’s also important to note that, on the promising side, research and public awareness campaigns are promoting prevention and early detection of skin cancer. Staying informed with the latest news on prevention and screening are important steps in reducing your risk of developing skin cancer. And, should a diagnosis occur, access to current, in-depth treatment information can help you find the best care.

Learning More About Skin Cancer

  • Find great tips on protecting yourself from the sun, checking your skin for suspicious changes, and insight into effective treatment non-melanoma and melanoma at Skin Cancer Tips and Melanoma Tips.
  • To find expanded information on the prevention, screening, and treatment of skin cancer, stay updated with the lasted news on the disease, and join a skin cancer community, visit the Skin Cancer Information Center or the Melanoma Information Center.
  • Sign up to receive Cancer Consultants’ free online skin cancer newsletter, which provides disease-specific features, current news, tips, and nutrition and wellness information. Subscribe at
  • Join the discussion at! This online community unites cancer patients, caregivers, survivors, and anyone interested in wellness and prevention.
  • Women magazine covers cancer concerns—including prevention, management, survivorship, and caregiving—and how these issues impact women specifically. Sign up for a free one-year subscription at
  • For even more late-breaking cancer news and discussion, follow Cancer Consultants on Facebook and Twitter.


[1] American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts and Figures 2009. Available at Accessed May 3, 2010.

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