Sunscreen But Not “Cancer-Screen”? A Review of Sunscreen as a Preventative Measure against Skin Cancer

Nearly 5 million Americans are treated for skin cancer annually (The surgeon general’s call to action to prevent skin cancer, 2014). In fact, the National Institute of Cancer recognized skin cancer as the most common form of the disease in the American population (Skin Cancer (Including Melanoma)-Patient Version, n.d.). Because sunscreen can effectively reduce a specific spectrum of ultraviolet radiation (UVR) (Tanner, 2006), it has become a popular form of protection in American households. However, we should not rely on sunscreen as the ultimate shield from skin cancer.