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Int J Cancer. 2004 Dec 10;112(5):896-900.

Artificial ultraviolet radiation and ocular melanoma in Australia.

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  • 1National Centre in HIV Epidemiology and Clinical Research, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.


We examined risk of ocular melanoma with exposure to artificial sources of exposure to ultraviolet radiation (UVR) in a population-based epidemiologic study of 290 cases of ocular melanoma and 893 controls aged 18-79 years in Australia in 1996-1998. Cases were identified through a prospective survey of all ophthalmologists and cancer registries in Australia; 91.8% participated. Controls were sourced from electoral rolls; 67.4% of those who were eligible and contactable participated, while 27.3% could not be contacted. Exposure to welding and use of sunlamps, including sunbeds and tanning booths, was measured by telephone interview. Analyses used unconditional logistic regression and included age, sex, region of birth, eye color, ocular and cutaneous sun sensitivity and personal sun exposure as covariates. Risk of choroid and ciliary body melanoma in 246 cases increased significantly with longer duration of use of sunlamps, first use before 21 years of age and first use after 1980. These effects were independent of personal sun exposure. Risk of these melanomas also increased with increasing duration of welding exposure, although the trend was not significant overall. There was no evidence that these exposures increased the risk of iris (n = 25) or conjunctival (n = 19) melanomas. Personal exposure to sunlamps and welding predicts risk of choroid and ciliary body melanoma in Australia.

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