Posts Tagged ‘tanning after sugery’

Tanning After Surgery

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

Often a patient will ask “how long do I have to wait after my surgery to go back to the tanning beds?”  The answer is …“FOREVER.”  Of course we share with them that UV exposure to an incision can delay healing and darken the scar, making it more noticeable.  However, there are much more important reasons that we want our patients to be aware of.

In the Lancet Oncology Journal, a panel of cancer experts upgraded the warning on tanning beds from “probably” to “DEFINITELY” able to cause cancer. You may recall seeing this on the CBS morning show in the late summer of this year.

UVA radiation used in tanning beds is responsible for the increased risk of developing basal cell and squamous cell cancers along with melanoma, the most deadly of all skin cancers. The fact that UV radiation causes skin cancer cannot be taken lightly.  According to the American Cancer Society one million new cases of basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers will be reported and over 60,000 cases of Melanoma will be reported this year as well.

UVA is often referred to as the aging ray.  It allows ionizing radiation free to destroy the protein in elastic fibers called “elastin” and collagen.  This creates signs of pre-mature aging such as wrinkles, skin ptosis (sagging skin) brown spots and broken blood vessels. If the thought of brown spots, sagging, dull dry and wrinkled skin sounds unappealing to you, take a look at a cancerous facial lesion.   It might make those “dying” to get a tan think twice.

Roxanne, Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Clinic

Roxanne Hammond, RMA
Skincare and Laser Specialist
G. D. Castillo, M.D.
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