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ESMO Responds to the EU Public Consultation on Cancer Prevention Linked to Ultraviolet Radiation (UVR) from Sunbeds

ESMO advocates for stricter legislative measures for sunbed use in the EU to reduce the risks of melanoma
24 Nov 2023

ESMO commends the EC’s efforts to mitigate the adverse health effects linked to the use of sunbeds, aligning with the objectives outlined in Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan and the BECA Report on Strengthening Europe in the Fight Against Cancer. The society also emphasises the critical role of UVR exposure in melanoma risk and recommends regulating sunbed use for cosmetic purposes by adults and advocating a total prohibition for individuals under 35 years old.

Importantly, ESMO underscores the need for preventive measures, citing research indicating that approximately 75% of melanoma cases in individuals under 30 years old are linked to artificial sunlight exposure. Moreover, the organisation endorses the EC’s focus on primary prevention strategies, which should involve implementing awareness campaigns targeting adolescents, young adults (AYA), and healthcare professionals. Such recommendations should also align with the European Code Against Cancer, providing user-friendly information on sunbed-related cancer risks to all citizens.

Furthermore, ESMO suggests integrating routine healthcare professional examinations, incorporating enquiries about observed lesions during self-skin examinations. The main recommendations in this regard involve the use of ‘ABCDE’ criteria for melanoma diagnosis, with acknowledgement of challenges in detecting nodular melanoma that may not align with the standard criteria.

ESMO reaffirms its call for more stringent legislative measures, proposing a complete prohibition of sunbed use among AYA population. The organisation commits to actively supporting the EC’s initiatives and stands ready to harness its extensive network of medical oncologists and researchers to formulate robust strategies addressing the repercussions of artificial ultraviolet radiation.

For additional information, please, contact: publicpolicy@esmo.org

You can also download ESMO’s feedback here.

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