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Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2010 Dec;19(12):3005-12. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-10-0709. Epub 2010 Oct 12.

Validity of self-reported solar UVR exposure compared with objectively measured UVR exposure.

Author information

1
Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, USA. kglanz@upenn.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Reliance on verbal self-report of solar exposure in skin cancer prevention and epidemiologic studies may be problematic if self-report data are not valid due to systematic errors in recall, social desirability bias, or other reasons.

METHODS:

This study examines the validity of self-reports of exposure to ultraviolet radiation (UVR) compared to objectively measured exposure among children and adults in outdoor recreation settings in 4 regions of the United States. Objective UVR exposures of 515 participants were measured using polysulfone film badge UVR dosimeters on 2 days. The same subjects provided self-reported UVR exposure data on surveys and 4-day sun exposure diaries, for comparison to their objectively measured exposure.

RESULTS:

Dosimeter data showed that lifeguards had the greatest UVR exposure (24.5% of weekday ambient UVR), children the next highest exposures (10.3% ambient weekday UVR), and parents had the lowest (6.6% ambient weekday UVR). Similar patterns were observed in self-report data. Correlations between diary reports and dosimeter findings were fair to good and were highest for lifeguards (r = 0.38-0.57), followed by parents (r = 0.28-0.29) and children (r = 0.18-0.34). Correlations between survey and diary measures were moderate to good for lifeguards (r = 0.20-0.54) and children (r = 0.35-0.53).

CONCLUSIONS:

This is the largest study of its kind to date, and supports the utility of self-report measures of solar UVR exposure.

IMPACT:

Overall, self-reports of sun exposure produce valid measures of UVR exposure among parents, children, and lifeguards who work outdoors.

PMID:
20940277
PMCID:
PMC3005549
DOI:
10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-10-0709
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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