Skin Cancer Prevention Strategies Lacking in Work Settings

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Solar UV exposure can be a hidden hazard in many workplace environments.
Solar UV exposure can be a hidden hazard in many workplace environments.

(HealthDay News) -- Solar occupational ultraviolet (UV) exposure is a major determinant of incident squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), according to a study published online Aug. 27 in the British Journal of Dermatology.

Jochen Schmitt, M.D., from University Hospital and Medical Faculty Carl Gustav Carus in Dresden, Germany, and colleagues evaluated the association between occupational and non-occupational UV exposure among 632 consecutive patients with incident SCC and 996 population-based, propensity-matched controls.

The researchers found that total solar UV exposure was significantly associated with increased SCC. The high (>90th percentile) and moderate (40th to 60th percentile) occupational UV exposure, the odds ratios for SCC were 1.95 and 2.44, respectively, compared to low exposure (<40th percentile). Non-occupational UV exposure was not significantly related to SCC incidence when adjusting for occupational UV exposure. There was a dose-response relationship for occupational exposure, but not for non-occupational solar UV exposure.

"Our findings indicate that prevention strategies should be further expanded to the occupational setting," the authors write.

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