Sun protection should be used year-long to help prevent rise in skin cancer

For the third consecutive decade, skin cancer is on the rise with the highest mortality rates amongst those with darker skin tones. Even though the summer season is over, we are still at risk.

A surprising 80% of sun damage comes from everyday exposure[1]. Consequently, there is still a great amount of education needed regarding the importance of proper daily sun protection. To help educate the public and turn these frightening statistics around, the acting Surgeon General recently issued a call to action to bring awareness to the dangers of UV radiation and the importance of daily sunscreen use[2].

Save our Skin.

The sun safe crusaders at La Roche-Posay have been advocating this message for the last five years with the SOS – Save Our Skin program, providing over 10,000 free skin cancer screenings throughout various events across the country and handing out more than 500,000 free sunscreen samples. However, despite these efforts, a new study reveals sunscreen use has declined significantly among young people over a 10 year period[3].

In addition, nearly five million Americans are treated for skin cancer each year[4] and the number of people with skin cancer has grown higher than all other cancers combined[5]. Even those with darker skin tones are at risk as skin cancer does not discriminate. These stats are scary, but luckily skin cancer is preventable; and when detected early, it is in most cases curable with a full recovery.

With skin cancer risks increasing within the ethnic communities, La Roche-Posay joined forces with the Women’s Dermatologic Society (WDS) to help educate the public and enforce a change in sunscreen habits for the skin of color population through a nationwide program. Throughout 2014, the WDS in partnership with La Roche-Posay were present at key events targeting the ethnic skin audience where free skin cancer screenings and sunscreen samples were offered. A total of 763 people were screened with suspicious lesions detected in nearly a third of the checks. As part of this outreach, a survey was also given to over 200 attendees with skin of color to learn more about their sun safety habits, and a number of alarming findings were discovered, including:

— Nearly 60% of attendees had never received a skin check
— Only 50% apply sunscreen during outdoor activities
— Almost 25% never reapply
— More than 50% agree that sunscreen is NOT necessary when it’s cloudy

The good news is that the partnership is clearly making a difference and starting to get the sun safe message across to those who are willing to listen. After learning about the risks of sun exposure, an astounding 80% of attendees will now wear sunscreen on a daily basis and 97% agree that the event’s skin cancer screening has made them more aware of practicing sun safety[6]!

“In keeping with our mission of providing everyday sun safety education for all, the WDS joined forces with La Roche-Posay to engage all demographics, from students to adults, men and women of all races,” said Dr. Valerie Callender, President of the Women’s Dermatologic Society. “While we are thrilled that this message has gotten the attention of many participants, there is still so much more education to do regarding sun safe behavior. We will continue to dedicate our efforts to raise awareness not only during sun season, but year-round!”

To continue to spread this daily sun safety message throughout various communities, La Roche-Posay set up a Facebook campaign to reward charitable organizations who are actively helping to educate about the risks of sun exposure. Fans nominated their favorite charities, and two organizations, Mollie’s Fund and SunSafe San Diego, received the most nominations for their commitment to educating young people on the importance of sun safety. Both organizations target young adults and teenagers, making them aware of the risks at a young age through sun safety awareness events within their communities and beyond. The goal is to combat the harsh reality that there continues to be indifference regarding the use of daily sunscreen and tanning device dangers among adolescents and young people.

In an effort to further increase sun safety year-round, La Roche-Posay will be offering 40% off of their Anthelios 40 Sunscreen through November 15(th) by using the PROMO code SOS40 at checkout. Visit


Recommended by more than 25,000 dermatologists worldwide, La Roche-Posay offers a unique range of daily skincare developed with dermatologists to meet their standards in efficacy, tolerance and elegant textures for increased compliance. The products, which are developed using a strict formulation charter, include a minimal number of ingredients to reduce side effects and reactivity and are formulated with active ingredients at optimal concentrations for increased efficacy. Additionally, La Roche-Posay products undergo stringent clinical testing to guarantee efficacy and safety, even on sensitive skin.

A leader in advanced UVA formulation research and innovation for over 15 years, La Roche-Posay’s Anthelios sunscreen range is trusted and recognized by dermatologists all over the world for providing effective UVA and UVB protection. The range features advanced patented sunscreen technologies, including 100% mineral-based UV protection formulas, as well as those developed with Mexoryl(TM)SX, a unique, key ingredient that acts as a short wave UVA filter, and most recently, CELL-OX SHIELD(TM) XL, a powerful, synergistic combination of filters that provides UVA/UVB and antioxidant protection using 21% fewer ingredients. All Anthelios sunscreens are known for their effective, broad-spectrum protection as well as their fast-absorbing, lightweight and cosmetically elegant texture.

About SOS – Save Our Skin

Now in its fifth year, La Roche-Posay continues its SOS – Save Our Skin to not only inform Americans about the dangers of UV rays and the importance of sun safety, but to also encourage true behavioral change, such as incorporating sun protection in their daily routines and visiting their dermatologists for regular skin checks. In partnership with the Women’s Dermatologic Society (WDS), the SOS – Save Our Skin campaign lives through a series of initiatives, including skin checks at sporting events, local hospitals and drug stores as well as free skin checks offered to all L’Oreal corporate employees. To learn how to do a self-check and choose the right protection, visit
About the WDS

The Women’s Dermatologic Society, founded in 1973, is dedicated to helping dermatologists fulfill their greatest potential and assisting them in making a contribution to the specialty and society. To achieve this goal, the Society relies on the active participation of its members, who represent a diverse cross-section of professional subspecialties. The mission of the Women’s Dermatologic Society is to support dermatologists by striving to: promote leadership and the development of relationships through mentoring and networking; demonstrate a commitment to service through community outreach and volunteerism; provide a forum for communications and research relevant to women’s and family issues; advocate excellence in patient care and education, and promote the highest ethical standards. and



[3] Dermatology Times, Oct. 2014, p. 56

[4] U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Prevent Skin Cancer. Washington, DC: U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services, Office of the Surgeon General; 2014: page 1.

[5] American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts & Figures 2014. Accessed June 2, 2014.

[6] La Roche-Posay. Data on file.

Killer skin cancer zapped in new BMI treatment

Dermatologists are seeing an upsurge in skin cancer amongst older people as a result of sunbathing at an earlier age.  In this case study, 66-year-old David discovered he had a dangerous face cancer.

As a lover of ‘the great outdoors’ David has long been aware of the dangers of too much sun and has been plastering on sun cream for years.

Unfortunately,  in David’s case, the damage was done long before Factor 50 became fashionable and now, after just having a dangerous cancer removed from his face, he is warning others in his age group to keep a close eye on their skin.

Sixty-six-year-old David was treated at BMI Manor Hospital in Biddenham by consultant dermatologist Anton Alexandroff in a procedure that took less than 90 minutes.


David after the operation

But things could have been much different if he hadn’t acted quickly when the growth appeared on his cheek just below his eye. It turned out to be a squamous cell carcinoma which, if left untreated, can spread around body, initially in nearby glands, and can be a killer.

David, who lives in of Tempsford, Bedfordshire, with wife Juliet, had already left the growth a couple of weeks, thinking it was just a bite or a scratch that had gone septic.

But he finally arranged to see Dr Alexandroff through his BUPA health insurance, and found that immediate action was necessary.

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Dr Anton Alexandroff

“Because this cancer is so dangerous I removed it on the very same day. It was over 4mm thick and I considered it high risk,” said Dr Alexandroff.

David explained: “I was going on holiday the following day so I asked if I could be booked in after that. However Dr Alexandroff simply said ‘let’s do it now’ and 90 minutes later I was on my way home minus a skin cancer! It really was that easy.”

“I have to admit that at first I was a bit surprised because, as a typical fair-skinned Scotsman, I have always had sensitive skin so I have always been careful about using creams and keeping covered up in the sun.

“However, it seems the damage was one when I was just a boy – long before high factor sun creams were in use. In those days if you got burned you used calamine lotion to ease the pain rather than creams to prevent the burning in the first place!

“If it happened to me then it will have happened to many others in my age group and I am warning people that no matter how careful they are now they need to be on the lookout for moles or blemishes that could be cancerous.

“My case showed just how quickly they can be treated if they are spotted early enough.”

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David back in his garden at home

Dr Alexandroff added: “The rate of skin cancers is on the increase and unfortunately every year we see more and more skin tumours – not only in older people but also in middle age group and even in younger patients.

It is extremely important to be careful with sun protection from an early age onwards, because sun-damage accumulates with time and increases the risk of skin cancers later in life.

“In particular it is a good idea to keep kids well covered – a broad-brimmed hat, long sleeves, long trousers or a long skirt are always good and choose a sunscreen with sun protection factor (SPF) 30 or higher and re-apply it every two hours.”

About BMI Manor Hospital

1.     BMI The Manor Hospital has 23 beds with all rooms offering the privacy and comfort of en-suite facilities, satellite TV and telephone.

2.     The hospital has a theatre, endoscopy room and a minor procedures room.

3.     These facilities, combined with state-of-the-art technology and on-site support services, enable our consultants to undertake a wide range of procedures from routine investigations to complex surgery.

4.     This specialist expertise is supported by caring and professional medical staff, with dedicated nursing teams and Resident Medical Officers on duty 24 hours a day, providi
ng care within a friendly and comfortable environment.

About BMI Healthcare

1.     BMI Healthcare is the UK’s largest independent provider of private healthcare with 69 hospitals and healthcare facilities throughout the country

2.     More than 6,000 consultants choose to practice at BMI hospitals, which collectively handle over 1.25 million patient visits each year

3.     BMI Healthcare focuses on clinical excellence, quality of service and efficiency, and have a deserved reputation in the independent healthcare sector for consistent achievement of these values

4.     For more information about BMI Healthcare hospitals, please visit




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