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Increased skin cancer: "a lot of emphasis on care"


The number of people diagnosed with skin cancer has increased rapidly in recent years. Almost 67,000 new patients are added each year since 2017. This is partly due to the fact that registration has improved, but also because more and more people are getting older, writes the Integraal Kankercentrum Nederland (IKNL) report. Skin cancer is also the most common type of cancer in the Netherlands.

The number of diagnoses is increasing because more and more people are getting older, and two of the three most common types of skin cancer mainly affect the elderly. Also, basal cell carcinoma IKNL has improved since 2015.

The three most common forms of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma. The latter is the most deadly form of skin cancer, but is the least common. Basal cell carcinoma is diagnosed 48,000 times a year, 12,000 people are diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma annually.

After years in which the number of melanoma diagnoses has only increased, the number of people diagnosed with melanoma is stable. Every year, about six thousand people get this form of skin cancer. The chances of survival after ten years of basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma are 100 and 90 percent, respectively. For melanoma, it's 86 percent.

"Skin cancer takes the form of an epidemic in the Netherlands, which has serious social consequences," says IKNL in a report. The growing number of patients puts a lot of pressure on hospitals and treatment centers. The Center therefore calls for more prevention than before. Avoiding the sun and using sunscreen can reduce the number of cases of skin cancer.

After skin cancer, breast cancer, colorectal cancer, lung cancer and prostate cancer are the most common cancers in the Netherlands. (NRC)

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