Hitting the Pools and Sunbathing Can Be Dangerous (Audio)

From days at the beach to afternoons out biking and hiking, people across Iowa are eagerly soaking up the sunshine, but doctors warn they need to take steps to protect themselves from the most common form of cancer. Dr. Wei-Wei Huang is a dermatologist who says many people still think of skin cancer as a mere inconvenience that requires removal. She calls that a dangerous underestimation of the disease.

Dr. Huang recommends hats, sunglasses, and sunscreen as some simple ways to protect against the various forms of skin cancer. Since early detection is key for successful treatment, Dr. Huang says people should regularly check for any suspicious moles, lesions or changes in their skin. She explains that different forms of skin cancer present in different ways, from a red, pimple-like bump to a dark, irregular-shaped mole. She recommends using the “A-B-C-D-E rule” to look for irregularities.

More than three-point-five million cases of basal and squamous cell skin cancer are diagnosed in the U-S each year, along with 75-thousand cases of melanoma, which is the most serious type of skin cancer.