Sunscreen: Not Everyone’s Savior

The resounding public health messaging is clear: Wear sunscreen to help prevent melanoma. But this one-size-fits-all rhetoric misses the mark: Black people stand a very low risk of getting melanoma from UV rays, writes University of Texas at Austin dermatologist Adewole S. Adamson.

Acral melanoma, which killed Bob Marley, is the type most likely in blacks—but it isn’t prevented by sunscreen.

The Quote: “If sunscreen was important in the prevention of melanoma in dark-skinned patients, then why have we never heard of an epidemic of melanoma in sub-Saharan Africa, a region with intense sun, a lot of black people, and little sunscreen?”

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