Skin Cancer: Module
to Module 14
Question 1: Think about
what you have learned about SEER and about skin cancer. Do you think we
can generalize from SEER data about the population of the United States
as a whole? How about your state? Your city, town, or county? Your neighborhood?
Answers may vary,
but should show understanding of the following: The SEER program includes
5 states and 6 urban areas. These represent about 14 percent of the U.S.
population. You can estimate national rates based on this information.
You may or may not be able to generalize it to a particular state, city,
or neighborhood. This is because different regions may have different
population distributions. These differences may include social and money
status, age, culture, habits, and race. There may also be other outside
factors affecting melanoma rates for the area. An outside factor may include
having a particular doctor who is more likely to diagnose the cancer than
in other areas.
Question 2: The
figures and tables above only present data on melanoma in white people.
Why do you think this is so? (Base your answer on what you know about
risk factors for melanoma.) How do you think the results would be different
if they included other racial or ethnic groups?
Only data for whites
are presented because the risk of melanoma is much higher in whites than
in other ethnic/racial groups. We can see how bad the problem is for the
highest-risk group by highlighting data in that group. This can help us
target prevention efforts to those at highest risk. The figures would
show much lower incidence and mortality rates if data from all racial
groups were included.
Question 3: How do age-adjusted
rates of melanoma vary among different racial groups? Was this what you
expected? Base your answer on what you have learned about the risk factors
for skin cancer.
melanoma rates are much lower for blacks than for whites. This is based
on the melanin pigment differences.
to Module 14