More than 11,000 Americans die each year from skin cancer. But when detected early skin cancer has a cure rate of 99%. Dr. David Pariser, a dermatologist and president of the American Academy of Dermatology, points out that since research shows farmers are among the least likely workers to receive a skin examination by a physician, it's important that farmers perform regular skin self-examinations, which could mean the difference between life and death.
Dr. Pariser says it's easy as "ABC" to remember how you can identify a mole or lesion that needs the attention of a dermatologist. Such as: Asymmetry - one half is unlike the other; Border - irregular, scalloped or poorly defined; Color - varies from one area to another; Diameter - the size of a pencil eraser or larger; and Evolving -changing in size, shape or color.
To help farmers minimize their risk of skin cancer, the American Academy of Dermatology recommends several suggestions, such as using water-resistant sunscreen with a sun protection factor of at least 30 on all exposed skin, and wearing long-sleeved shirts, pants, a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses while working in the sun.