Novel sunprotection interventions to prevent skin cancer: A randomized study targeting Danes going on vacation to destinations with high UV index

Brian Køster*, Mia N. Nielsen, Karina Kreipke Vester, Peter Dalum

*Corresponding author

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Background In Denmark, 16,500 cases of melanoma and keratinocyte cancers were registered in 2015, of which 90% could have been avoided by behavioral changes. We aimed to test novel interventions in a randomized design. The interventions targeted Danes going on vacation to high UVI destinations aiming to decrease sunburn by increasing use of sun protection to prevent skin cancer in the Danish population. Methods We report a randomized behavioral intervention during May-Dec 2018 with 1548 Danish adults on vacation in 2018 for a period of 1–3 weeks. The study population was population-based and aged 18–65 years. We tested two protection routines against minimal intervention control group (2-by2-factorial design): 1) Avoidance of the sun during peak hours and shade, use of the UV-index and planning of indoor/outdoor activity respectively and, 2) Coverage by increasing use of the hat advice and increasing sunscreen amount by application routine. Outcome was use of protection and sunburn. Results There were no differences in sunburn prevalence between intervention and control groups. Protection routine 1 and 2 both increased the overall protection score compared to nonusers. Protection routine 1 increased the reported use of shade and decreased time exposed in the sun. Protection routine 2 increased the use of hat and sunscreen amount. Conclusion Simple measures can help avoid the majority of one of the most widespread cancers worldwide. Vacations to high UVI destinations is a major influence on the annual Danish UV-exposure. We influenced travelers to protect themselves better and to increase sun protection behavior.

TidsskriftPLOS ONE
Udgave nummer12 12
StatusUdgivet - dec. 2020

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Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Køster et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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