Oncology (General Cancer)/Skin Cancer



To make a long story short: I have been sunburned MANY times on many different areas of my body.

Do I have to start worrying about skin cancer? (My mother's sister died from Melanoma Cancer). I am quite nervous.

Thank you!


It seems as though the highest risk of cancer comes from being sunburned during your teens or early twenties; but the risk is there, even if you are older.  What can you do about it?  First, stop getting sunburned!  The more you do, the higher the risk.  Second, see a dermatologist for a skin inspection once in a while, and call attention to any changes in your skin if you have them.  Find out what a melanoma looks like (plenty of pictures on the web) and look for such.  Patients who know what they are looking for and get prompt treatment do well.  Fnally, remember that the other kinds of skin cancer are not as dangerous as melanoma, but still should be watched for.  All that being said, your risk isn't super high, and with the measures I've outlined, you can't do much more.  Hope this helps.  

Oncology (General Cancer)

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Donald Higby, M.D.


I can answer almost all questions related to the treatment and natural course of most kinds of cancer, especially cancers of prostate, colon, lung and breast.


I have been a practicing medical oncologist for 36 years, and have been chief of service at a major medical center for 25 years. I've also done research in cancer treatments.

American Society of Clinical Oncology

New England Journal of Medicine American Journal of Medicine Journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology Hematology Transfusion Medicine

MD, Stanford University Internal Medicine residency, St. Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO Medical Oncology Fellowship, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY

Awards and Honors
America's Best Physicians, last 14 years

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