The Skin Cancer Prevention Working Group is a multi-center collaboration of experts dedicated to the prevention of skin cancer. The Working Group consists of clinical and research specialists that have spent years investigating and understanding the diagnosis and management of melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer.
The mission of the Working Group is to cultivate and analyze evidence-based research to better understand skin cancer pathophysiology, treatment, and prevention in order to be leaders in skin health education.
Darrell S. Rigel, M.D.
is a board certified dermatologist in New York City and Clinical Professor of Dermatology at the Ronald O. Perelman Department of Dermatology at NYU Grossman School of Medicine. Dr. Rigel completed his internship in internal medicine at Cornell University Medical Center and his dermatology residency training as well as a Dermatology Surgery Fellowship at NYU.
Aaron S. Farberg, M.D.
is a board certified dermatologist and cutaneous oncology specialist in Dallas, Texas. He is an Assistant Professor of Dermatology at Baylor University Medical Center. Dr. Farberg trained in plastic and reconstructive surgery at the University of Michigan prior to clinical research fellowship in skin cancer through the National Society for Cutaneous Medicine.
Alex Glazer, M.D.
is a board certified dermatologist and medical director of Glazer Dermatology, Chicago, IL. Dr. Glazer completed his dermatology residency training at the University of Arizona. He completed an additional fellowship in skin cancer through the National Society for Cutaneous Medicine.
Graham H. Litchman, D.O.
is a resident physician in the Department of Dermatology at St. John’s Episcopal Hospital, Far Rockaway, NY. Prior to residency, Dr. Litchman completed a clinical research fellowship in skin cancer through the National Society for Cutaneous Medicine.
Justin W. Marson, M.D.
is a physician in New York and is the Clinical Research Fellow for the National Society for Cutaneous Medicine. Dr. Marson earned his medical degree as part of the 7-year accelerated BA/MD program at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and completed his internal medicine internship at University of California, Irvine.
Ryan Svoboda, M.D.
is a resident physician in the Department of Dermatology, Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, PA. Prior to residency, Dr. Svoboda completed multiple dermatology clinical research fellowships including a focus on skin cancer through the National Society for Cutaneous Medicine.
Richard R. Winkelmann, D.O.
is a board certified dermatologist and cutaneous oncology specialist in Los Angeles, California. Dr. Winkelmann completed his dermatology residency at Ohio Health and spend additional time at the National Society for Cutaneous Medicine as a clinical research fellow studying skin cancer.
is a malignant cancer of cells that normally give color to our skin. Every year the overall incidence of melanoma continues to increase with over 80,000 new cases of melanoma diagnosed in 2019 alone and at least 8000 annual deaths from melanoma. While melanoma tends to be more common among Caucasians, individuals with darker skin types with melanoma tend to have worse outcomes. Furthermore, although more common with advanced age, melanoma is the second most common cancer among women age 15-29. If caught early, melanomas can be removed and followed closely; however delays in detection are tied to worse outcomes and increase the likelihood of early death.
There are many risk factors that increase the chances of developing melanoma including increased ultraviolet (UV) exposure, age, having red hair, blue eyes and/or lighter skin, a history of blistering sun burns prior to puberty and comorbid conditions or medications that weaken the immune system. Of these factors, UV radiation contributes to approximately 90% of cutaneous melanomas.
One of the best ways minimize the harmful effects of UV radiation is by using sunscreen. By using about a shot glass worth of sunscreen with at least an sun-protection factor (SPF) 30 or higher rating, individuals can significantly reduce the UV damage and sun burns.
Another thing people can do is perform regular self-examinations of their skin. Using the “ABCDE”s of melanoma (A – asymmetry, B – irregular borders, C – color variegation, D – diameter greater than 6mm, E – evolution or change) can help identify worrisome spots that can be pointed out to your board-certified dermatologist for further evaluation.
SKIN CANCERS (NMSC)
are the most commonly diagnosed skin cancers, with over 1 million new cases diagnosed each year. They can further be categorized as basal cell carcinomas, which account for approximately 80% of NMSC, and cutaneous squamous cell carcinomas, which have a slighter greater risk of spreading to other parts of the body. NMSC grow after years of chronic exposure to UV radiation or environmental/occupational chemical exposures and are usually on sun-exposed areas including face, neck, scalp, and dorsal arms. Additional risk factors for developing NMSC include lighter skin types, sun-damaged skin, advanced age, and a weakened immune system.
While NMSC carries a lesser risk of distant metastases than cutaneous melanoma, more aggressive forms of NMSC are known to spread to other organs in the body after causing severe local tissue destruction. Worrisome signs of a potential non-melanoma skin cancer include a pearly skin lesion (usually a basal cell skin cancer) or a rough, scaly spot (a squamous cell skin cancer) that continues to grow, bleed, or causes pain and should be discussed with a board-certified dermatologist to determine the best treatment course.