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Br J Dermatol. 1996 Nov;135(5):712-6.

Sunbed use in relation to phenotype, erythema, sunscreen use and skin diseases. A questionnaire survey among Swedish adolescents.

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  • 1Department of Cancer Prevention, Karolinska Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden.


Sunbed use was studied in relation to phenotype, erythema, sunscreen use and skin disease. The study population comprised 14-19 year-old Stockholm adolescents in 60 randomly selected classes, with 1252 students providing information. More than half (57%) reported sunbed use > or = 4 times during the previous year. Skin type III dominated (64%). Excessive exposure (> or = 10 times/year) was not correlated to skin type. Sunscreens were most commonly used by sunbed users. Of all sunbed users, 44% reported erythema. Adolescents with acne/seborrhoca, eczema or psoriasis used sunbeds more than others without skin diseases. The proportion with sunbed erythema (44%) indicates an unrecognized susceptibility to artificial ultraviolet radiation (UVR) among adolescents. The association between high exposure to UVR and sunscreen use stresses the importance of sunscreens being used as supplementary protection, not as a tool for tanning.

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