West Texans At an Increased Risk of Skin Cancer
Dermatologists and the Skin Cancer Foundation say more people are diagnosed with skin cancer than any other cancer combined.
According to NewsWest 9, people in the Basin usually work outside in the sun because of the oil industry, and the West Texas sun can do damage to the skin including and increased risk of developing melanoma, the most deadly form of skin Cancer.
Local National Weather Service meteorologists say the UV index is always around 9 or 10 in the Permian Basin during the summer months which puts people at an increased risk of developing skin cancer.
“We’re seeing it much more frequently in patient populations but there’s no doubt that the two biggest causes of sun exposure are occupational sun exposure and recreational sun exposure,” said Midland dermatologist Russell Akin.
Akin also stated that even though there is an increase in females, males are more likely to be diagnosed with skin cancer.
The best course of action is to make sure you are using sunscreen if you work outside, Akin says to use a sunscreen with at least an SPF of 45.