Publication Abstract

Authors: Hall HI, Rogers JD

Title: Sun protection behaviors among African Americans.

Journal: Ethn Dis 9(1):126-31

Date: 1999 Winter

Abstract: The anatomic distribution of some skin cancers suggests that sun exposure may be an etiologic factor for skin cancer among African Americans. Yet little is known about sun protection behaviors among African Americans. We analyzed data from the 1992 National Health Interview Survey (N = 1,583) to determine the prevalence of sun protection behaviors and sun sensitivity. About 6% of African Americans reported being extremely sensitive to the sun and severe sunburning, and 9% reported mild burns. Overall, 53% of respondents (47% of men and 57% of women) reported that they were very likely to wear protective clothing, seek shade, or use sunscreen lotion. Women were more likely than men to report seeking shade and using sunscreen. Sun protection behaviors were more frequently reported by those who sunburn more easily and were positively associated with age. Use of sunscreen was positively associated with income and education. Education about sun protection and early detection may help reduce the morbidity and mortality of skin cancer among African Americans.