Skin Cancer Awareness: Most Prevalent Cancer is Also the Most Preventable

A doctor examines a female patient's arm during a skin cancer screening
More than 5 million skin cancer cases are diagnosed every year in the U.S.

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month, a good time to shine a light on the disease and the importance of prevention and screening.

With more than 5 million cases diagnosed each year, skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the U.S. It’s also one of the most preventable.

According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, about 90 percent of non-melanoma skin cancers and 85 percent of melanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun.

Melanoma is less common than some other types of skin cancer, but more dangerous because it is more likely to spread to other parts of the body, if not detected and treated early.  The good news is that when caught early, the 5-year survival rate for melanoma is 99%.

The American Cancer Society predicts about 97,610 new melanoma skin cancer cases (58,120 in men and 39,490 in women) will be diagnosed in 2023, and 7,990 people (5,420 men and 2,570 women) will die from the disease. 

A doctor checks the skin on a patient's neck
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer by the age of 70.

More people are diagnosed with skin cancer in the U.S. each year than all other cancers combined and according to Skin Cancer Foundation statistics, 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer by the age of 70.

This infographic provides more facts and figures on skin cancer causes and risk factors, treatments and tips for prevention.


Infographic with skin cancer statistics