Melanoma skin cancer rates have doubled over past three decades

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Melanoma Skin Cancer Rates Have Doubled Over Past Three Decades

When headed outdoors to enjoy the summer weather, don't forget the sunscreen. The CDC reports instances of melanoma, the variety of skin cancer that's potentially fatal, have doubled over the past three decades. It now occurs at a rate of roughly 23 cases per every 100 thousand people, and is responsible for approximately 9,000 deaths in the U.S. every year.

The collective cost of treatment is estimated to be about $460 million. It's anticipated the number of cases will continue to increase as will the price of tending to them. By 2030, the treatment tally could be upwards of 1.6 billion.

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Melanoma skin cancer rates have doubled over past three decades
MIAMI, FL - JUNE 15: Doctor Antonella Tost, Dermatologist University of Miami School of Medicine, examines Michael Casa Nova,12, for symptoms of skin cancer due to sun exposure on June 15, 2011 in Miami, Florida. The federal Food and Drug Administration announced that sunscreen manufacturers are to change the labels on their products to prohibit the use of certain marketing terms. The new rules are meant to help clear up confusion about the meaning of 'sun protection factor,' or SPF, and other terms like 'waterproof.' (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - JUNE 15: Doctor Jonette Keri, Dermatologist University of Miami School of Medicine, displays the underside of Amy Rey's arm in contrast to the top side to compare what the sun has done to the top side as she examines her for symptoms of skin cancer due to sun exposure on June 15, 2011 in Miami, Florida. The federal Food and Drug Administration announced that sunscreen manufacturers are to change the labels on their products to prohibit the use of certain marketing terms. The new rules are meant to help clear up confusion about the meaning of 'sun protection factor,' or SPF, and other terms like 'waterproof.' (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - JUNE 15: Amy Rey has a mark on her skin after a biopsy was performed on a lesion to check for cancer due to sun exposure on June 15, 2011 in Miami, Florida. The federal Food and Drug Administration announced that sunscreen manufacturers are to change the labels on their products to prohibit the use of certain marketing terms. The new rules are meant to help clear up confusion about the meaning of 'sun protection factor,' or SPF, and other terms like 'waterproof.' (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - JUNE 15: Amy Rey has freckles on her belly, as she gets a skin exam by a dermatologist at the University Of Miami School Of Medicine, she uses sun screen since she may be more susceptible to skin cancer due to her fair skin on June 15, 2011 in Miami, Florida. The federal Food and Drug Administration announced that sunscreen manufacturers are to change the labels on their products to prohibit the use of certain marketing terms. The new rules are meant to help clear up confusion about the meaning of 'sun protection factor,' or SPF, and other terms like 'waterproof.' (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
In this photo taken on Jan. 26, 2012, in Aurora, Colo., Jodi Duke, a 35-year-old melanoma survivor living in Aurora, shows the scar left on her arm from melanoma. Duke used tanning beds as a teen and advocated for a bill regulating tanning that failed in 2007. Colorado is one of the last states to consider tanning bed limits for children. But a proposal this year to require parental notification for UV tanning beds may run into opposition from lawmakers who have vowed to shun regulation. (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)
Katie Donnar, 18, shows her scar from where the melanoma was on the calf of her leg Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010 in Vincennes, Ind. in front of a tanning bed like the on she used at her home and at the tanning salons. Donnar was in the sixth grade when she started using tanning beds. (AP Photo/ Daniel R. Patmore)
A bandaged Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., takes part in a Washington news conference to discuss campaign finance reform, Monday, Feb. 11, 2002. Last week, McCain had a cancerous lesion removed from the left side of his nose which was diagnosed as the earliest form of melanoma and was removed. (AP Photo/Stephen J. Boitano)
Freckle-faced Corey Halpin, 13, shows off his big scar at his Hanover Park, Ill., home on Monday, April 18, 2005, a reminder of surgery three years ago to remove a cancerous growth from his left arm. At age 10, doctors discovered melanoma on Corey's left arm, the most serious and potentially deadly form of skin cancer that until recently was almost unheard of in children. (AP Photo/Brian Kersey)
BOSTON - MAY 20: Melanoma survivor Elissa Campbell was photographed in the Back Bay in Boston, Mass. on Monday, May 20, 2013. This is the scar where the mole was removed on the back of Campbell's leg. (Photo by Yoon S. Byun/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
BOSTON - MAY 20: Melanoma survivor Elissa Campbell was photographed along Commonwealth Avenue in the Back Bay in Boston, Mass. on Monday, May 20, 2013. (Photo by Yoon S. Byun/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
Chart shows the survival rate of melanoma patients by stage of detection and treatment
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On an up note, there are simple preventative measures. Melanoma is linked to exposure to the sun and the UV rays its light contains. Using sunscreen, ideally with an SPF rating between 30 and 50, is one way to stave off its ill effects. Wearing hats and clothing while outdoors is also helpful in keeping sun-related issues. Widespread engagement in those practices, as well as steering clear of tanning beds and booths, could cut the projected nationwide increase by up to 20 percent.



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