Sun & Skin News

Are You at Risk for Skin Cancer?

By Skin Cancer Foundation • September 13, 2018
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Certain types of skin are at greater risk for developing sun damage and skin cancer. Do you know your skin type?

The Fitzpatrick Skin Type is a skin classification system first developed in 1975 by Thomas Fitzpatrick, MD, of Harvard Medical School. There are six skin phototypes, going from light to dark. Individuals with skin types I and II face the highest risk of developing skin cancer, while types V and VI are at the lowest risk. That is because those with more pigmentation have more natural protection from the sun. However, people with darker skin can still get skin cancer. Everyone, regardless of skin type, should practice a complete sun protection strategy and have regular skin exams with a dermatologist.

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