Indoor tanning and tanning dependence in young people after a diagnosis of basal cell carcinoma

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Adult; Behavior, Addictive; Carcinoma, Basal Cell; Female; Humans; Male; Questionnaires; Skin Neoplasms; Sunbathing; Survivors


Behavior and Behavior Mechanisms | Community Health | Community Health and Preventive Medicine | Dermatology | Public Health | Public Health Education and Promotion


Individuals who have had basal cell carcinoma (BCC) are at high risk of subsequent BCCs and melanoma. Indoor tanning is an established risk factor for BCC, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma. As such, continuing to tan indoors after a BCC diagnosis may elevate one’s risk for future skin cancers. Skin cancer survivors have sun protection behaviors that are similar to those of the general population, but little is known about their indoor tanning behavior. Notably, research suggests that some individuals develop tanning dependence, analogous to substance dependence,which could be related to continued indoor tanning. To understand better the patterns of and reasons for indoor tanning after BCC diagnosis, we assessed indoor tanning and symptoms of tanning dependence in people who had received at least 1 BCC diagnosis before age 40 years.

DOI of Published Version



Cartmel B, Ferrucci LM, Spain P, Bale AE, Pagoto SL, Leffell DJ, Gelernter J, Mayne ST. Indoor tanning and tanning dependence in young people after a diagnosis of basal cell carcinoma. JAMA Dermatol. 2013 Sep;149(9):1110-1. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2013.5104.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

JAMA dermatology

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID