The first 30 years of the American Academy of Dermatology skin cancer screening program
By Okhovat JP, Beaulieu D, Tsao H, Halpern AC, Michaud DS, Shaykevich S, Geller AC. NIH Library of Medicine
The incidence of melanoma is rising faster than that of any other preventable cancer in the United States. The American Academy of Dermatology has sponsored free skin cancer education and screenings conducted by volunteer dermatologists in the United States since 1985.
From 1986 to 2014, records were available for 2,046,531 screenings, 1,963,141 (96%) of which were subjected to detailed analysis. Men comprised 38% of all participants. The number of annual screenings reached approximately 100,000 in 1990 and remained relatively stable thereafter. From 1991 to 2014 (data for 1995, 1996 and 2000 were unavailable), clinical diagnoses were rendered for 20,628 melanomas, 156,087 dysplastic nevi, 32,893 squamous cell carcinomas, and 129,848 basal cell carcinomas. Only 21% of screenees had a regular dermatologist. Those with a clinical diagnosis of skin cancer were more likely than the general screening population to be uninsured.
Study findings suggest that the SPOTme program has detected thousands of skin cancers that may have gone undetected or experienced a delay in detection.
The SPOTme® Skin Cancer Screening Program is the American Academy of Dermatology's longest-standing public health program. Since its inception in 1985, dermatologists have conducted more than 2.7 million free skin cancer screenings with more than 271,000 suspicious lesions detected, and more than 30,000 suspected melanomas. Millions of people have been educated about the importance of sun protection and early cancer detection through the skin cancer screening program. As a result, countless lives have been saved by identifying melanomas in their earliest, most treatable stage.
Their Skin Cancer Heroes" campaign features patients and survivors, the friends and loved ones who have helped and supported them, and the board-certified dermatologists who have detected and treated their skin cancer. The AAD encourages everyone to be their own "Skin Cancer Hero" by taking steps to prevent skin cancer and detect it early, when it’s most treatable. This is especially important for men over 50 as they have an increased risk of developing melanoma compared to the general population.
507 East Jefferson Street
Brooksville, FL 34601
7341 Spring Hill Drive, #3138
Spring Hill, FL 34606-3138