Monthly Archives: May 2012

The Sad News About Tanning Beds And Sun Safe Behaviors: The Price We May Pay For Ignoring The Message

Incredulous. Astounding. Unanticipated.


Those were my initial thoughts when I had a moment to read the two reports released yesterday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about the use of tanning beds and sunburn/sun protective behaviors.


I was completely unprepared for the results of the studies. And I am supposed to know this stuff.


As I mentioned in one of the interviews published on the topic, the information contained in those studies raised my concern and passion about the topic to a new level. And if you are aware of this issue, it should raise your concerns as well. If the trends on tanning bed use and failure to engage in sun safe behaviors continue, we could be in for a serious problem regarding skin cancer and melanoma in years to come.


Now we have information from the CDC that the situation is worse than many of us thought.[more]


First, some of the numbers:



  • 31.8% of white women between the ages of 18 and 25 used tanning beds in the 12 months prior to the survey, which was conducted in 2010. For white women between the ages of 22-25 the
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Was The Today Show Truthful When They Broadcast “The Truth About Sunless Tanning?”

Sometimes a major television network does a health piece that simply doesn’t comport with the known facts. And sometimes they really step over the line.


Well, folks, The Today Show last week stepped way over the line when they ran a piece called “The Truth About Sunless Tanning.” I don’t know who decided to put this information on the air, but it certainly wasn’t anyone who knew anything about the dangers of tanning beds. More likely, it appeared to be a puff piece delivered at the behest of the tanning industry. [more]


So there you are watching the video and you see Ann Curry-a leading Today show anchor/newsperson-with a spokesman from the tanning industry’s “educational” arm who is tall, trim and tan next to Dr. Nancy Snyderman. There is a machine which bears an eerie resemblance to an open coffin prominently placed on the set, and a thin, svelte male model in a pair of brief shorts who is going to show us how wonderful it is to be exposed to this coffin-looking-like machine while the adults talk about “Truth”.


As this segment proceeds, the paid representative of the tanning industry (a truly neutral expert … Continue reading →

Has Science Served Us Well When It Comes To The Prevention and Early Detection Of Cancer?

As I write this, I am returning from a trip to Los Angeles where I participated yesterday in a panel discussion on the topic of cancer prevention and early detection. The occasion was the 2012 Global Conference sponsored by the Milken Institute. (If you are not familiar with this conference, it is probably one of the premier finance and investing conferences in the country, if not the world. And the luminaries in attendance–both as attendees and speakers–were a testament to the influence of the Institute and its founder, Michael Milken.)


I was on this panel through an invitation from the Melanoma Research Alliance and its chief executive, Wendy Selig, a former colleague of mine when she was at the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network.  Other participants included Dr. Stephen Gruber, who is the recently appointed director for the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center in Los Angeles, Dr. Sancy Leachman who is the director of melanoma and cutaneous oncology at the Huntsman Cancer Institute in Salt Lake City, and Sherry Lansing who is the CEO of a foundation of the same name and a well-known cancer research advocate (she is very well known in … Continue reading →