Office of Air and Radiation (6205J)   EPA-430-F-09-069  May 2009
Skin cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in the

United States.1"4 This fact sheet presents statistics about skin

cancer for Vermont and  the United States as a whole.

small state:  Big Problem

• Sunburns on the Rise. A 2004 survey found that 47.1 % of white adults in Vermont had
   at least one sunburn in the pastyear—an increase from 39.1% in 1999.5 Sunburns are
   a significant risk factor for the development of skin cancer.6'8

• New Cases of Melanoma. Vermont had the highest rate of new melanoma
   diagnoses in the U.S. from 2001-2005,63% higher than the national average.9'10 In
   2008, an estimated 180 state residents were diagnosed with melanoma, which is
   responsible for 75% of all skin cancer deaths.2

   •  Bennington County has the highest rate of melanoma diagnoses among
      counties nationwide,11179%  above the national average.9

• Deaths from Melanoma. More than 25 people in Vermont die  of melanoma
   every year.12 Vermont had the 13th  highest melanoma death rate nationally from
   2001 -2005—11.1 % higher than the U.S. average.13
Melanoma Death Rates,
All Races, Both Sexes, All Ages
 Melanoma Deaths per Year
 per 100,000 People

   2.2-2.3 FJ 2.4-2.6 | 2.7-2.9 | 3.0-3.2
  1 All references can be found on the SunWise Web site at:
survivor story: Marcelle Leahy
               Growing up, I was always in the sun and sunburned. All that sun finally caught up
               to me in 2003 when my new dermatologist decided to biopsy a discolored spot on
               my face. I'd had it for years, but something about it didn't feel right. The result: a
               large melanoma in situ.

               The first two operations to remove it weren't successful, leaving my face disfigured
and still with cancer. Mohs surgery was scheduled with a different doctor to remove the rest. After six
excisions during the Mohs, an area of skin the size of my palm was removed, and I was finally cancer-
free. I learned to be an advocate for my own health, and to keep asking questions. I've had at least six
nonmelanoma skin cancers removed since, and am always on the lookout for any skin changes.

My advice: we know how to prevent and detect skin cancer, so share your knowledge with your
loved ones. I'll never know which sunburn gave me cancer, but I'll certainly do all I canto protect
my grandchildren from getting one.

Marcelle Leahy likes to make time for cancer prevention, education, and research programs. She is married to
Senator Patrick Leahy; they have 3 children and 5 grandchildren.
                                                                                      Annual Rate of New
                                                                                      Melanoma Diagnoses,
                                                                                      All Races, Both Sexes, All Ages
 Melanoma Diagnoses per Year
 per 100,000 People

 O 18.3-25.8 O 25.9-33.5 Q 33.6-41.2 |

 [2 Suppressed Data
     Recycled/Recyclable—Printed with vegetable oil-based inks on paper that contains at least 50% post-consumer fiber.

     The  Cost of Skin Cancer
            In  the U.S., medical costs to  treat
            skin cancer are estimated at almost
            $2 billion annually.14'15
statistics:  Cause for  Concern

• In 2008, more than 1 million people were diagnosed
   with skin cancer, making it the most common of all
   cancers.1"4 More people were diagnosed with skin
   cancer in 2008 than with breast, prostate, lung, and
   colon cancer combined.2 About 1 in 5 Americans
   will develop skin cancer during their lifetime.17

• One American dies of melanoma almost every hour.2

• Melanoma is the second most common form of
   cancer for adolescents and young adults (15-29
   years old).18

• For people born in 2005,1 in 55 will be diagnosed
   with melanoma13— nearly 30 times the rate for
   people born in 1930.'
            National Annual Rate of New Melanoma Diagnoses, 2001-2005"
            All Races, Both Sexes, All Ages, Age-adjusted Rates
             Melanoma Diagnoses per Year per 100,000 Peopl
            * Please note that delays in reporting melanoma cases to cancer registries are more common since they are usually
             diagnosed and treated in non-hospital settings such as physician offices. States are grouped into quintiles based
             on rates of melanoma diagnoses. A quintile is a statistical "block" representing 20% of a total. Because data
             are available for only 45 states and D.C., four quintiles include nine states, and one includes 10. For example,
             the ten states with the highest melanoma rates—21.8 to 28.6 diagnoses per 100,000 residents every year—are
             in the top quintile.
what works:

An  Ounce of Prevention

• Unprotected exposure to ultraviolet light is the most preventable
   risk factor for skin cancer.6'17'20'23 Taking simple steps as early in life
   as  possible can reduce one's risk.2A24~25

• Early detection of melanoma can save one's life.26 32 Skin
   examinations may be the best way to detect skin cancer early.2'33'37

• The CDC found evidence that education and policy approaches
   in primary schools (for children) and in recreational or tourism
   settings (for adults) can improve sun safety behaviors.38 39

• Student self-reported  data40—collected as part of the U.S. EPA's
   SunWise Program—showed that teachers using the SunWise Tool
   Kit for 1-2 hours yearly can spur increases in students' sun safety
   knowledge and attitudes and  small to modest improvements in
   short-term sun safety  behaviors.41

   •  Using the data mentioned above, published modeling results
      show SunWise teaching between 1999 and 2015 could prevent
      more than 50 premature deaths and 11,000 future cases of skin
      cancer, saving the  country more than $30 million in medical costs
      and productivity losses.41

1~41 All references can be found on the SunWise Web site at:
                               skin cancer prevention:

                               Action Steps

                               • Do Not Burn. Overexposure to the sun is the
                                 most preventable risk factor for skin cancer.

                               • Avoid Sun Tanning and Tanning Beds.
                                 UV light from tanning beds and the sun
                                 causes skin cancer and wrinkling.

                               • Use Sunscreen. Generously apply a broad
                                 spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or
                                 higher. Reapply at least every two hours, and
                                 after swimming or sweating.

                               • Cover Up. Wear protective clothing, such as
                                 a long-sleeved shirt, pants, a wide-brimmed
                                 hat, and sunglasses with 99-100% UVA/UVB
                                 protection, when possible.

                               • Seek Shade. Seek shade when the sun's
                                 UV rays are most intense between 10 a.m.
                                 and 4  p.m.

                               • Watch for the UV Index. Pay attention to the
                                 UV Index when planning outdoor activities to
                                 prevent overexposure to the sun.