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CONTACT: TOM WALLJASPER
Joint Office for Planning, Marketing and Communications
8790 John Pappajohn Pavilion
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-7353
e-mail: tom-walljasper@uiowa.edu

Release: May 1, 2002

Public invited to seminar on skin cancer

Area residents are invited to hear University of Iowa Health Care experts discuss skin cancer at a free community seminar at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 21 at the Clarion Conference Center, 1220 First Ave., in Coralville.

Duane Whitaker, M.D., professor, Daniel A. Davis, M.D., associate faculty member, and Mary King, a registered nurse and nursing specialist in skin cancer and surgery, all from the UI department of dermatology, will present, "Truth or Consequences: Know the Facts about Skin Cancer." This program is part of the "Health For Your Lifetime" series presented by UI Health Care.

This program will present a comprehensive overview of skin cancer and will include discussion of:

-- The myths of skin cancer;

-- The effects of tanning booths;

-- Understanding sunscreen;

-- Protecting your children.

The presentation will be followed by a question-and-answer session.

More than one million new cases of skin cancer will be diagnosed in the United States this year. If detected early, skin cancer can be easily treated. However, the warning signs are often overlooked. Nearly 10,000 Americans will die from melanoma and nonmelanoma forms of skin cancer this year, according to the American Cancer Society.

Some 40 to 50 percent of Americans who live to the age of 65 will have skin cancer at least once, according to current estimates. Anyone can get skin cancer. However, people at greatest risk have fair skin that freckles easily -- often those with red or blond hair and blue or light colored eyes. It is estimated that people get about 80 percent of their total lifetime sun exposure in the first 18 years of life. Ultraviolet radiation from the sun is the main cause of skin cancer.

The most common warning sign of skin cancer is a change on the skin such as a new growth or a sore that doesn't heal. The cure rate could be nearly 100 percent if all skin cancers were detected early and treated.

Pre-registration for this program is encouraged. For more information, or to register, call (319) 384-8442 or toll-free at (800) 777-8442.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide. Visit UI Health Care online at www.uihealthcare.com.