Melanoma Monday

Skin Cancer Awareness Month Begins With Melanoma Monday.

There was widespread media coverage of Melanoma Monday highlighting the Academy’s efforts to raise awareness about the deadly skin cancer.

Good Morning America (5/6) featured Melanoma Monday as its cover story. Good Morning America reported that one in five people will develop will develop skin cancer in their lifetime, according to the Academy. The segment highlighted the story of Megan Didio who was diagnosed with melanoma at the age of 21 and underwent surgery, which successfully removed the cancerous mole from her face. The segment also featured Dr. Whitney Bowe, a dermatologist, who discussed the importance of properly applying sunscreen and explained the ABCDEs of detecting melanoma.

CBS News (5/6, Morgan) reports on its website that “the first Monday in May kicks off Skin Cancer Awareness Month.” Dr. Elizabeth Hale, a dermatologist and spokesperson for the Academy, appeared on “CBS This Morning” to talk about melanoma and remind people of the ABCDE’s of melanoma. Hale explained that people should look out for the following characteristics when checking their skin for potential melanoma: asymmetry, border irregularity, color variation, diameter, and evolution (or change).

TODAY (5/6) also covered Melanoma Monday sharing the stories of Tracy Callahan and Joshua Paschal. Callahan was diagnosed with melanoma and underwent surgery to remove a mole on her neck, and has been diagnosed with melanoma four times in total. Today also featured Dr. Jeanine Downie, a dermatologist, who explained that melanoma can start very small and shared the ABCDEs of melanoma to help people detect the skin cancer.

In another segment, TODAY (5/6) went into greater detail about Paschal’s story. Paschal is an African-American college football player who discovered he had melanoma on the sole of his foot. Paschal said he was surprised by the diagnosis, particularly because of the color of his skin and his age. Paschal underwent surgery to remove the mole and continues to receive immunotherapy to reduce the chance of recurrence.

The Weather Channel broadcast two interviews with Dr. Jason Clark, a dermatologist. During one interview, Clark explains how people can check themselves for melanoma using the ABCDEs system and also offers advice on how to pick a good sunscreen. The interview “also featured the sunglasses and shirt from” the Academy’s media relations toolkit. During the other interview, Clark also talked about the importance of people checking their entire bodies, including between their fingers and their toes, because melanoma can develop anywhere on the skin.

WLS-TV Chicago (5/6) interviewed Dr. Carolyn Jacob of Chicago Dermatology about how to prevent skin cancer and spot melanoma. Jacob also talked about how everyone is at risk of melanoma and that the skin cancer can develop anywhere on the skin.

“Good Day Chicago” on WFLD-TV Chicago (5/6, FOX) featured Dr. Omer Ibrahim, a Chicago dermatologist, discussing the safety and importance of sunscreen for preventing skin cancer. During the interview, Ibrahim shared pictures showing what different types of skin cancer can look like, and also offered more advice about how can people can protect themselves from skin cancer.

Clinical Care

Better Performance Measures Are Necessary To Improve Quality Of Care For Dermatologic Surgery Patients, Researchers Say.
Healio (5/6, Sutton) reports researchers conducted a review study and concluded that “better performance measures will improve the quality of care for dermatologic surgery patients.” The findings were published in Dermatologic Surgery. The article mentions that the researchers used the Academy’s DataDerm registry.

Experts Discuss Safety And Efficacy Of LED And Laser Treatments For Skin Conditions.
TODAY (5/6, Lowe) reports on the safety and efficacy of LED and laser treatments for the skin. The article quotes several clinicians describing the various uses of LED And laser treatments for acne, rosacea, and other conditions. The article mentions that “lasers should also not be used on people who have recently been exposed to ultraviolet radiation without protection, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.”

From the American Academy of Dermatology

Share AAD’s new video — “Do You Use Protection?”— to help raise skin cancer awareness
Yesterday was Melanoma Monday®, but all-month-long is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. Since most cases of melanoma are attributable to UV exposure, the AAD’s new “Do You Use Protection?” video will remind your patients to protect their skin while outdoors. Please share this video via social media and embed it into your practice website. If you have questions about how to share the video, contact the AAD’s Communications Department at (847) 330-0230 or [email protected].


Sunscreen Ingredients May Be Present In Blood One Day After Use, FDA Says.
CNN (5/6, Lamotte) reports on its website researchers at the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research found in a pilot study published in JAMA that it only took “one day of use for several common sunscreen ingredients to enter the bloodstream at levels high enough to trigger a government safety investigation.” Dr. David Leffell, a spokesman for the American Academy of Dermatology, said, “Studies need to be performed to evaluate this finding and determine whether there are true medical implications to absorption of certain ingredients.”

NBC News (5/6) reports on its website that the researchers tested sunscreens with avobenzone, ecamsule, octocrylene, and oxybenzone. Dr. George D. Hruza, the president of the American Academy of Dermatology, issued a statement saying in part that the chemicals in question “have been used for several decades without any reported internal side effects in humans.” Hruza added, “Importantly, the study authors conclude that individuals should not refrain from the use of sunscreen, which the AAD encourages as one component of a comprehensive sun protection plan as sunscreen use has been shown to reduce the risk of skin cancer in a number of scientific studies.”

Reuters (5/6, Mishra) reports Dr. Robert Califf and Dr. Kanade Shinkai wrote in an accompanying editorial, “The demonstration of systemic absorption well above the FDA guideline does not mean these ingredients are unsafe.”

Practice Management

Expert Explains How To Expand Cosmetic Services In A Dermatology Practice.
In the “Answers in Practice” column, Dermatology World (5/1) interviewed Beth Santmyire-Rosenberger, MD, PhD, the owner of Appalachian Spring Dermatology in Fairmont, West Virginia. During the interview, Santmyire-Rosenberger explains “how to expand the cosmetic side of a practice.”

Dermatologist Shares Experience Helping Patients With Albinism In Botswana.
Dr. Victoria Williams, an assistant professor of clinical dermatology at the University of Pennsylvania, wrote in the “Balance in Practice” column for Dermatology World (5/1) about her work providing care to patients with albinism in Botswana. Williams describes how she first observed such patients as a resident back in 2014, and then “assumed a full-time position as a dermatologist in Botswana for two and a half years following residency.” As part of her efforts in Botswana, Williams utilized the Academy’s SkinCare in Developing Countries Grant to launch “a sunscreen program in the country in 2017.”

Law and Policy

Oregon House Passes Stricter Vaccine Rules.
The AP (5/6, Zimmerman) reports the Oregon House on Monday “approved tightening the state’s vaccine laws and limiting a parent’s ability to-opt out of school vaccine requirements.” According to the article, “Oregon currently has one of the nation’s most relaxed vaccination laws and is one of 17 states to allow parents to vaccinate their children for philosophical, personal and religious reasons.” Legislators voted 35-25 “to limit those substantially limit exemptions, only allowing families to opt-out for medical reasons.” The Hill (5/6, Budryk) reports Gov. Kate Brown (D) has signaled “she will sign the bill if it passes the state Senate.”

NPR (5/6, Vanderhart) reports if the measure passes, Oregon would “become the fourth state to eliminate nonmedical exemptions.”

Texas Vaccine Exemptions Continue To Rise. The Houston Chronicle (5/6, Ackerman) reports “the number of Texans who exempt their children from vaccination for non-medical reasons rose another 14 percent last school year.” The rise “continues a now 15-year-long trend that public health officials worry is leaving communities vulnerable to the resurgence of preventable diseases such as measles, confirmed this year in 23 states, including Texas.” According to new report released by the Texas Department of Health Services, “there are currently more than 64,000 K-12th grade Texas students with at least one conscientious exemption on file.”

California State Senator And Pediatrician Urges State To Pass Stricter Vaccination Requirements. In an op-ed for the Los Angeles Times (5/6, Pan), California state senator Richard Pan (D), a practicing pediatrician, calls on California to pass additional measures to prevent the spread of vaccine-preventable diseases, such as measles and whooping cough. Pan blames the return of such diseases on lax vaccination requirements at higher institutions of learning and “unethical doctors, who are willing to take patients’ money and grant inappropriate medical exemptions to misinformed families, thereby putting other children at risk.” Pan urges his colleagues in the state Legislature to pass Senate Bill 276, which “would require review by public health officials before medical exemptions from vaccination requirements are approved.” The bill “would also create a database of medical exemption requests so the state’s medical board can better investigate unethical physicians.”

International News

Over 34,000 Europeans Caught Measles In First Two Months Of The Year, WHO Says.
Reuters (5/7, Kelland) reports that “more than 34,000 people across Europe caught measles in the first two months of 2019, with the vast majority of cases in Ukraine, the World Health Organization said on Tuesday as it urged authorities to ensure vulnerable people get vaccinated.” The death toll among the European cases “reached 13, with the virus killing people in Ukraine – which is suffering a measles epidemic – as well as in Romania and Albania.”

Ship With Crew Member Diagnosed With Measles To Remain Under Quarantine In Curacao.
The AP (5/6, Drayer) reports that “authorities in Curacao say 318 people aboard a Church of Scientology ship docked in the Dutch Caribbean island will remain quarantined at least until Wednesday while they determine how many might be infected with measles.” Dr. Izzy Gerstenbluth said Sunday “that a team of health officials took 277 blood samples and sent them to the Netherlands.” Gerstenbluth “said he expects results on Tuesday or Wednesday, adding that the atmosphere on the boat is good and that everyone is cooperating.”

Also in the News

Measles Count Rises To 764 Cases In 23 States.
ABC News (5/6, Keneally) reports that according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of new measles cases rose by 60 in the last week to a total of 764, and “the new number of measles cases reported Monday means that so far this year, there have been nearly 100 more cases than there were in all of 2014.”

The Wall Street Journal (5/6, McKay, Subscription Publication) reports the measles outbreak has reached 23 states, with Pennsylvania being the newest one.

CNN (5/6, Goldschmidt) reports “fifty-two of the 60 new cases reported this week were in New York: 41 in New York City, 11 in Rockland County, according to the CDC.” CNN adds that “in the New York neighborhoods affected by the ongoing measles outbreak, health and government officials have begun fining those who remain unvaccinated and have fined and closed schools for allowing unvaccinated students to attend.”

The Hill (5/6, Weixel) reports “the vast majority of the cases involve children who have not been vaccinated, CDC officials have said.” HuffPost (5/6, Golgowski) reports “the CDC has attributed the unusually high number of cases to travelers who contract the disease overseas and then bring it to U.S. communities that have under-vaccinated populations.”

Officials Warn Of Possible Measles Exposure At Three Additional Sites In Pittsburgh. The AP (5/6) reports that “health officials in western Pennsylvania have released new information about possible exposure to measles last month in the Pittsburgh area.” The Allegheny County health department “says four people with measles, three of them overseas visitors and one resident of the county, may have exposed people at a restaurant, thrift store and the National Aviary.” The article adds that there have been five confirmed cases of measles in the county this year.

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (5/6, Lindstrom) reports, “A child diagnosed with measles may have been infectious while traveling on a flight from Tel Aviv, Israel, to Terminal C of Newark Liberty International Airport, followed by a connecting flight that landed at Terminal A of Pittsburgh International Airport on April 16, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.” Also reporting is the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (5/6).

Person With Measles Visited Popular Tourist Spots In Los Angeles. The AP (5/6) reports Los Angeles County health officials “say one of the most recent local cases of measles involved a person who visited popular tourism locations including The Grove shopping center, The Original Farmers Market and La Brea Tar Pits.” People who were at those sites and “nearby areas on April 27 may be at risk of developing the highly contagious disease for up to 21 days.”

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