About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us

Fatal Skin Care Myths That can Be Detrimental To Colored People

by Jeffil Obadiah on August 1, 2019 at 6:08 PM
Font : A-A+

Fatal Skin Care Myths That can Be Detrimental To Colored People

Colored people are immune to skin cancer is a myth. A new study states that anyone, including the colored people, can develop skin cancer due to exposure to the ultraviolet rays.

"There's a common colloquial phrase, 'black don't crack' — meaning your skin will always be good. You won't get wrinkles, and you don't need sunscreen if you have melanin-rich skin," said Dr. Jenna Lester, a board-certified dermatologist at UCSF.


Lester is here to tell you that's flat wrong. Too much sun can cause some of the most common problems that people with darker skin tones face, including hyperpigmentation and melasma. Dark skin is also no guarantee that you won't get skin cancer — and being unaware of that fact can be fatal.

"Melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, is less common among people of color, but they have a much higher rate of dying from it," Lester said. "That has to do with this misinformation about darker skin. They may not even know skin cancer is a possibility."

Music legend Bob Marley was just 36 when he died from an aggressive form of melanoma that primarily affects people of color.

In fact, African Americans have the lowest survival rates for melanoma of any racial group in the U.S. The disease is more likely to be detected at a later stage when it is much harder to treat. The five-year survival rate for black people with a melanoma diagnosis is just 66 percent, compared to 90 percent for white people.

Melanin, the pigment that influences skin color, provides some protection from the sun's damaging rays, but people with darker skin still need to take precautions. They should also learn the warning signs of skin cancer and how to protect their skin.

Cancer that killed Marley, for example, often appears as a small lesion on the palms of the hands, the soles of the feet or under the nails. In Marley's case, he had a small sore under a toenail that he thought was a sports injury. By the time it was diagnosed, cancer had spread.

Last fall, recognizing that communities of color face serious health disparities in dermatology care, Lester opened UCSF's Skin of Color clinic. It's one of just a handful of dermatology offices around the country designed specifically to meet the needs of people with melanin-rich skin.

"Patients would walk into the room and say, 'I've never had a black dermatologist before,'" Lester said. "There was a level of comfort that they could achieve, even without me saying anything to them."

Source: Newswise

News A-Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Insulin Resistance Doubles the Risk of Major Depressive Disorder
Emotional Healing
Psychosis Risk Related to Cat Parasite
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Boils / Skin Abscess Pityriasis rosea Pemphigus Hives Scleroderma Vitiligo Skin Self Examination Skin Care Skincare Tips Dermatomyostitis 

Recommended Reading
Black and White in ‘Shades of Grey’
Culture, language, religion and region play important roles in an individual being favored or ......
Skin Cancer Rates in New England Take a Dip
Early detection is the key to prevent melanoma into skin cancer and is the reason for the downfall ....
Melasma, also called as chloasma, is a skin hyperpigmentation problem characterized by brown spots ....
Boils / Skin Abscess
Encyclopedia section of medindia gives general info about Boils / Skin Abscess ...
Dermatomyostitis (DM) is an uncommon, inflammatory disease affecting the connective tissues. It is c...
Hives or Urticaria are allergic skin reaction that appear suddenly in clusters or as single bumps on...
Pemphigus is a rare group of autoimmune diseases that affect the skin and mucous membranes causing b...
Pityriasis Rosea
Pityriasis rosea is a common skin disease that is not contagious. It manifests as oval-shaped, pink ...
Scleroderma or CREST syndrome is a chronic, auto immune disease which manifests as thick, dry, fibro...
Skin Self Examination
The skin self examination means checking one’s own skin for any visible abnormal growths or unusual ...
Vitiligo is a skin disease characterized by patches of unpigmented skin. Vitiligo is usually slowly ...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use