Attention Sun Worshipers: Know the warning signs

Armen Hareyan's picture
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(NC) - Having a tan is often confused with having a "healthy glow". Even though people are more aware now than ever before about the sun's damaging effects, many still choose to bask in it unprotected.

In fact, with prolonged exposure over the years, Actinic Keratosis or AK (a common skin condition) can develop and can signal the early beginnings of skin cancer. Actinic Keratosis affects at least one million Canadians. It can show up in the form of lesions on the most sun-exposed areas including the scalp, face, neck, and arms.

The good news is that if you can spot AK, you can stop it. Because AK lesions can develop into skin cancer, it is important to have every lesion evaluated by your physician and treated accordingly.

Are you at risk?

If you answer yes to one or more of these questions, you could be at risk for developing AK.

1. Are you fair haired and fair skinned?

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2. Do you burn easily?

3. Are you over 50? This can put you at risk due to the numerous years of sun exposure.

4. Over the years have you spent a considerable amount of time in the sun either as part of your profession or for recreational activities (i.e., farmer, construction worker, life guard, golfer, sailor)?

5. Do you have a compromised immune system due to disease, genetic disorders, or medication?

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- News Canada

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