Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States.

Guide to Skin Safety

Know how to protect yourself

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There are 3 types of skin cancer:

Basal cell carcinoma (most common)

Squamous cell carcinoma (2nd most common)

Melanoma (3rd most common)

You’re at high risk of skin cancer if you:

Have light skin, hair, and eyes

Have a family or personal history of skin cancer

Have certain types and large numbers of moles

Are older

Did You Know?

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When detected early, the 5-year survival rate for melanoma is 99%.

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Approximately 9,500 people in the United States are diagnosed with skin cancer EVERY DAY, with the vast majority of skin cancer deaths due to melanoma.

Health disparities in skin cancer

  • Women are more likely than men to engage in behaviors that protect against skin cancer, like using sunscreen.
  • Before age 50, women have higher rates of melanoma than men. However, rates in men are twice as high by age 65 and three times as high by age 80.
  • People with skin of color are prone to skin cancer in areas that are not commonly exposed to the sun, such as the palms of the hands, soles of the feet, groin, inside the mouth, and under the nails.
  • Skin cancer in patients of color is often diagnosed in later stages, when it’s more difficult to treat. 
  • Skin cancer deaths are disproportionately higher in patients who are Black or Latinx. 5 years after a melanoma diagnosis, 74.1% of Black patients have survived compared to 92.9% of white patients. 
  • Many dermatologists are not taught to spot cancer on Black skin. Half of dermatologists report that their medical school did not prepare them to diagnose cancer on Black skin.