Changing perceptions of solaria and cancer risk: the role of the media

Geoffrey Jalleh, Robert J Donovan, Chad Lin and Terry Slevin
Med J Aust 2008; 188 (12): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2008.tb01867.x
Published online: 16 June 2008

To the Editor: In recent years, solaria have multiplied across Australia. Solaria can emit higher concentrations of ultraviolet radiation than the midday summer sun.1 As exposure to ultraviolet radiation is a risk factor for skin cancer, including melanoma,2 it is not surprising that there is mounting evidence that solarium use increases melanoma risk.1,3-4

  • 1 Centre for Behavioural Research in Cancer Control, Curtin University of Technology, Perth, WA.
  • 2 Social Marketing Research Unit, School of Marketing, Curtin University of Technology, Perth, WA.
  • 3 The Cancer Council Western Australia, Perth, WA.


  • 1. Walter SD, Marrett LD, From L, et al. The association of cutaneous malignant melanoma with the use of sunbeds and sunlamps. Am J Epidemiol 1990; 131: 232-243.
  • 2. Veierød MB, Weiderpass E, Thörn M, et al. A prospective study of pigmentation, sun exposure, and risk of cutaneous malignant melanoma in women. J Natl Cancer Inst 2003; 95: 1530-1538.
  • 3. Elwood JM, Jopson J. Melanoma and sun exposure: an overview of published studies. Int J Cancer 1997; 73: 198-203.
  • 4. Autier P, Doré J, Lejeune F, et al. Cutaneous malignant melanoma and exposure to sunlamps or sunbeds: an EORTC multicenter case-control study in Belgium, France and Germany. Int J Cancer 1994; 58: 809-813.
  • 5. Ewart H. Melanoma victim warns of solarium risks. ABC News 2007; 22 Aug. (accessed Feb 2008).
  • 6. Paul CL, Stacey F, Girgis A, et al. Solaria compliance in an unregulated environment: the Australian experience. Eur J Cancer 2005; 41: 1178-1184.
  • 7. Chapman S, McLeod K, Wakefield M, Holding S. Impact of news of celebrity illness on breast cancer screening: Kylie Minogue’s breast cancer diagnosis. Med J Aust 2005; 183: 247-250. <MJA full text>


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