Easy tips to prevent skin cancer from UCSF health expert


SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS RADIO) – Americans have been practicing techniques to prevent skin cancer for generations, but the disease is still the most common type of cancer in the U.S.

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We have access to sunscreen, sun hats and protective clothing, and have been warned of the dangers of tanning beds, and yet, in 2022 over 5 million Americans were diagnosed with skin cancer.

UCSF is working to lower these numbers by spreading awareness about early prevention.

Dr. Adil Daud is a medical oncologist from the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center and is the co-director of UCSF's Melanoma Program.

"I'm a medical oncologist, so I see patients who have advanced skin cancer. That's when it's spread to your lymph nodes or spread to some place else in your body," Daud told KCBS Radio's "As Prescribed." "In our clinics, I want to say every week this happens."

As we head into summer, Daud shared some tips for people who want to enjoy the sun, but also protect their skin.

"If you can avoid going out like, say, between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., that's when the sun is at its peak. That's when UV radiation is at its maximum," he advised.

Living in the Bay Area, many residents are used to Karl the Fog covering the skies. Even though it may not feel sunny on the gray days, Daud warned that protection is still important.

"Even through the fog, UV radiation can penetrate, so you're not necessarily protected just because it's cloudy," he said. "And if you're in the water, you need to reapply your sunscreen more frequently if you're getting it washed off."

Warning signs of skin cancer include lesions that are colored red, white or blue, asymmetry and an irregular border.

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