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Subject:Relationship to Other Cancers and Toxins

Have you seen in recent research or in your experiences at MD Anderson:
- increased risk of other types of cancer in people who've had squamous cell skin cancer? What types?
- Additional ways to avoid skin/other cancers beyond the usual(stay out of sun, regular personal and doctor checkups, nutrition and exercise)?
- increased risk of skin or other types of cancer as a result of frequent hair coloring or coffee drinking? Obviously, neither is good, but have read that since hair colors were improved after 70s, that cancer risk was reduced (though not all think research was conclusive on this). And would imagine de-caff coffee isn't as bad as caffenated coffee.
- any other new findings relative to skin cancer?


Posted: 14 Jun 2005 10:26 AM
Originally Posted: 13 Jun 2005 03:25 PM
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Total Messages 63

Subject:Relationship to Other Cancers and Toxins

Patients with exposure to arsenic have higher incidence of both squamous cell cancer and lung cancer. Having squamous cell cancer of the skin is a sign of much sun exposure, therefore these same patients would be screened for other sun-related skin cancers such as melanoma and basal cell cancer.

Of course the proven ways to avoid skin cancer is to avoid sun, sun protection with sunscreen, and skin check-ups. A healthy diet/lifestyle and not smoking prevents against all cancers. Sunscreens should block both UVA and UVB light. Other less cited ways to protect yourself from the sun is protective clothing. A white shirt is equivalent to SPF 3. Tighter woven, darker shirts are more protective. Detergents such as Rit Sun Guard contain tinosorb and works by absorbing UVA and UVB light. One laundering increases the SPF of clothing to 30 and should last 20 washes. There is research ongoing about the benefits of green tea.

I think of cancer as one cell gone wrong, then it has lots of "babies" or clones that also carry the mutation. So anything that jars your immune system could theorhetically "cause" cancer. Hair coloring has been associated with lymphoma.

Recent studies have not linked coffee with cancer. The American Cancer Society has concluded that caffine is NOT a risk factor for cancer. In fact, modest amounts of coffee may actually decrease your risk for cancers. Some studies show caffinated coffee is beneficial; whereas other studies show only decaffinated coffee is helpful. Caffine does have other delterious effects such as increased heart rate, blood pressure and reflux. Likely 2-4 cups of coffee a day will not cause lasting harm and may even be beneficial.

Joy Kunishige, M.D.

Posted: 16 Jun 2005 03:20 PM
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