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Skip Navigation U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Agency for Healthcare Research Quality

Counseling for Skin Cancer

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force

Release Date: October 2003

Summary of Recommendations / Supporting Documents

Summary of Recommendation

  • The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force concludes that the evidence is insufficient to recommend for or against routine counseling by primary care clinicians to prevent skin cancer.

    Rating: "I" statement

    Rationale: The USPSTF found insufficient evidence to determine whether clinician counseling is effective in changing patient behaviors to reduce skin cancer risk.  Counseling parents may increase the use of sunscreen for children, but there is little evidence to determine the effects of counseling on other preventive behaviors (such as wearing protective clothing, reducing excessive sun exposure, avoiding sun lamps/tanning beds, or practicing skin self-examination) and little evidence on potential harms.

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Supporting Documents

Counseling for Skin Cancer, October 2003

Recommendations and Rationale (PDF File, 139 KB; PDF Help)
Summary of Evidence (PDF File, 200 KB; PDF Help)

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Current as of October 2003

Internet Citation:

Counseling for Skin Cancer, Topic Page. October 2003. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.


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