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Study Shows Skin Cancer Risks Rise with Extended Car-Time

A new study from the American Academy of Dermatology highlights the higher incidence of left-sided skin cancers on the sun-exposed areas--head, neck, arms and hands--of drivers. A number of window film manufacturers are using the study as an opportunity to teach consumers about how their products can prevent cancer-causing UV rays from reaching unsuspecting drivers. Dr. Scott Fosko, MD, FAAD, professor and chair of dermatology at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, who conducted the study, noted in his research that tinting automobile glass or using UV filters on windows helps reduce the amount of UVA that penetrates the glass. "Our initial data shows that those individuals under age 70 who consistently spent the most time per week driving a car were more likely to develop left-sided skin cancers," says Fosko. "We're also finding that all drivers who occasionally drive with the windows open had a higher incidence of left-sided skin cancers. Light skin complexion and more driving time also increased the risk for forming skin cancers on the left side. Since there are more cars on the road than ever before, it is likely that this trend will continue. And with more women than ever driving for work and family activities, I wouldn't be surprised if we see higher reports of left-sided skin cancers in women in the future - gradually closing the gender gap that now exists."

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