There is no such thing as a healthy tan

The specialist was emphatic in assuring that people should not expose themselves to the sun with the aim of tanning.

Dr. Hiram Ruiz, Puerto Rican dermatologist. Photo: Journal of Medicine and Public Health. Interview capture.

“Although there is a lot of information, we continue to see on the beaches how many people believe that there is a healthy tan, because when you tan there is already damage to the skin, and we are not going to see that damage soon, but the patient is going to see him when he is older”, said the Dr Hiram RuizPuerto Rican dermatologist in an exclusive interview with the journal of Medicine and Public Health.

Surgery is the most used option, because the lesion is completely removed and a biopsy is performed to determine if it is benign or malignant. However, when the lesion is deeper, the sentinel lobe biopsy procedure “is painted where the nodule is located and two fragments are removed to study them and treatment is immediately started,” explained Ruiz.

The specialist specified that many people, when they get older, come to his office asking to have their spots and wrinkles removed and claim not to know the reason for the appearance of these signs of aging, which in Ruiz’s opinion have to do with the solar exposition.

Skin care and inflammatory diseases

For his part, Dr. Rogelio Mercado, past president of the Dermatological Society of Puerto Ricospecified that many of the skin conditions are associated with inflammatory diseases, the immune system and stress, which is also associated as a default factor in many cases.

“In principle, all skin diseases are associated with inflammation, the immune system and stress as a factor that exacerbates the condition that can be atopic dermatitis, alopecia, among others. I want to clarify that stress by itself is not a determinant for suffering from any related condition, it is only a trigger for a genetic predisposition and the environment in which the patient develops, ”he explained.

In this sense, Dr. Mercado explained that in the west of Puerto Rico he has found a higher prevalence of benign pre-cancerous lesions, since in the area there are many fishermen who have been exposed to the sun all their lives, and already entered adulthood. is that you see those consequences.

“Near the coast where we have fishermen, Sufis, in them we see these lesions that are often not easy to detect, but we professionals can detect them and thus avoid skin cancer,” he explained.

Mercado clarified that this condition is closely known in the west of Puerto Rico because that is where he carries out his professional practice, but this is normal throughout the national territory, hence the importance of paying attention to any type of change in the skin and consult a specialized doctor.


You can reduce your risk of melanoma and other types of skin cancer by following these recommendations:

Avoid the sun during midday. For many people in North America, the sun’s rays are strongest between 10 am and 4 pm Schedule your outdoor activities for other times of the day, even in winter or when the sky is cloudy.

Throughout the year you absorb UV radiation, and clouds offer little protection from harmful rays. Avoiding the sun when it is strongest helps prevent sunburn and tanning that cause skin damage and increase the risk of developing skin cancer. Cumulative sun exposure over time can also cause skin cancer.

Wear sunscreen year-round. Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a sun protection factor of at least 30, even on cloudy days. Put on plenty of sunscreen, and reapply it every two hours, or more often if you’re swimming or perspiring.

Wear protective clothing. Cover skin with dark, tightly knit clothing that protects your arms and legs and a wide-brimmed hat, which provides more protection than a baseball cap or visor.

Some companies also sell protective clothing. The dermatologist can recommend a suitable brand. Don’t forget the sunglasses. Look for ones that block both types of UV radiation: UVA and UVB rays.

Avoid tanning lamps and tanning beds. Tanning lamps and sunbeds emit UV radiation and can increase the risk of skin cancer.

Know what type of skin you have in order to notice the changes. Examine your skin frequently for new lumps or changes in existing moles, freckles, bumps, and birthmarks. With the help of mirrors, check your face, neck, ears, and scalp.

Examine the chest, trunk, and upper and lower arms and hands. Examine both the front and back of the legs and feet, the soles of the feet, and the spaces between the toes. Also check the genital area and between the buttocks.

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