Sergey Arutyunyan, Sarah V. Alfonso, Nilda Hernandez, Tracy Favreau, M. Isabel Fernández. Predictors of Sunburn Risk Among Florida Residents. J Am Osteopath Assoc 2017;117(3):150–157. doi: 10.7556/jaoa.2017.029.
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Context: The incidence of skin cancer, the most common type of cancer in the United States, is increasing. Sunburn is a major modifiable risk factor for skin cancer, and its prevalence among the US population is high.
Objectives: To identify predictors of having had a red or painful sunburn in the past 12 months among people living in Florida.
Methods: Florida residents were recruited from public places and online. They were asked to complete an anonymous cross-sectional survey that assessed demographic information, dermatologic history, as well as knowledge, attitude, and behavior factors associated with sunburn.
Results: A total of 437 participants whose data were complete for all variables were included in the multivariate analysis. In multivariate logistic regression, younger age (18-29 years) was the most significant predictor of sunburn (OR, 15.26; 95% CI, 5.97-38.98; P<.001). Other significant predictors included identifying as nonwhite (OR, 0.51; 95% CI, 0.29-0.90; P<.02), having had a full-body skin examination by a physician (OR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.03-3.14; P<.04), reporting higher levels of skin sensitivity to the sun (OR, 4.63; 95% CI, 2.07-10.34; P<.001), having a less favorable attitude toward sun protection (OR, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.81-0.94; P<.001), having high perceived vulnerability to skin cancer (OR, 1.21; 95% CI, 1.05-1.41; P<.009), and spending less than 1 hour outside between 10 am and 4 pm on weekends (OR, 0.46; 95% CI, 0.22-0.96; P<.04). The model was statistically significant at P<.001 and correctly classified 78% of participants.
Conclusions: Sunburn prevention programs that osteopathic physicians can readily implement in clinical practice are urgently needed, particularly for young adult patients. This study identified 7 predictors of sunburn in Florida residents. With additional research findings, promoting attitude change toward sun protection may be a viable strategy.
Keywords: Florida, skin cancer, SPF, sun protection factor, sunburn
a The total sample size for each variable may not add up to 619 because of missing data. Data are presented as No. (%) unless otherwise indicated.
b Main outcome measure.
c 18 items, 1 point was awarded for each correct answer and the score was calculated by summing the number of correct responses with maximum knowledge score of 18 points.
d 8 items, each awarded up to 5 points, for a maximum score of 40 points.
e 5 items, each awarded up to 5 points for a maximum of 25 points.
f 2 items, each awarded up to 5 points for a maximum of 10 points.
g 9 items, each awarded up to 5 points for a maximum of 45 points.
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