Pub. date: 2007 | Online Pub. Date: June 13, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412956208 | Print ISBN: 9781412909495 | Online ISBN: 9781412956208| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Skin Neoplasms, Benign and Malignant
Skin neoplasms are very common in the elderly and can be categorized into benign, premalignant, and malignant tumors. Malignant melanoma is the leading cause of death due to skin disease. The incidence of melanoma and other skin cancers is rising. Older patients, particularly men, have disproportionately greater mortality and morbidity from melanoma. Therefore, it is important that the older population be aware of risk factors, preventive measures, clinical presentation, and treatments associated with skin cancers. Ultraviolet light exposure is a major risk factor and increases the risk of skin cancer among people with all skin types, but especially those who are fair-skinned. Those with red or blond hair and fair skin that burns easily are most vulnerable. The incidence of melanoma among Whites is 20 times higher than the incidence among Blacks and is 4 times higher than that among Hispanics. Using sunscreen has been shown to prevent skin cancers. ...