- Skin Cancer Prevention and Early Detection
- What is skin cancer?
- What is ultraviolet (UV) radiation?
- Are some people more likely to get skin damage from the sun?
- How do I protect myself from UV rays?
- What about tanning pills and other tanning products?
- Skin exams
- What should I look for on a skin self-exam?
- What if I find something suspicious on a skin exam?
- Additional resources
Skin Cancer Prevention and Early Detection
Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States. In fact, more skin cancers are diagnosed in the US each year than all other cancers combined. The number of skin cancer cases has been going up over the past few decades.
The good news is that you can do a lot to protect yourself and your family from skin cancer, or catch it early so that it can be treated effectively. Most skin cancers are caused by too much exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays. Most of this exposure comes from the sun, but some may come from man-made sources, such as indoor tanning beds and sun lamps.
You don’t need any x-rays or blood tests to find skin cancer early – just your eyes and a mirror. If you have skin cancer, finding it early is the best way to make sure it can be treated with success.
Last Medical Review: 03/19/2015
Last Revised: 03/20/2015