Gery P. Guy, Jr, Zahava Berkowitz, Meg Watson, Dawn M. Holman, Lisa C. Richardson of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta said indoor tanning is associated with an increased risk of skin cancer, especially among frequent users and those initiating use at a young age.
Indoor tanning before age 35 increases melanoma risk -- the most serious skin cancer -- by 59 percent to 75 percent, while using indoor tanning before age 25 increases non-melanoma skin cancer risk by 40 percent to 102 percent, the researchers said.
Moreover, melanoma risk increases by 1.8 percent with each additional tanning session per year.
Melanoma incidence rates are steadily increasing, especially among young non-Hispanic white females, which may be due, in part, to indoor tanning, the researchers said.
Currently, prevalence estimates of indoor tanning among this population are limited.
"Therefore, we examined the prevalence of indoor tanning and frequent indoor tanning more than 10 times a year using nationally representative data among non-Hispanic white female high school students and adults ages 18-34," the researchers said.
The study, published in Internal Medicine, found among those young women who reported any indoor tanning, more than half reported frequent tanning, or more than 10 times a year.
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