Kansas City Dermatology, P.A.
Proposed Consent Agreement In the Matter of the Indoor Tanning Association, FTC File No. 082 3159
I am in full support of the FTC's position against the false advertising that has been ongoing for years by the tanning industry. The American public has been misled and misinformed by this industry for monetary gain and has placed our citizens at increased health risk for the development of precancerous and malignant skin conditions. When I enetered private practice in dermatology in 1981, the lifetime risk of developing a melanoma in a child born that year was 1 in 250. Recent data suggests that that the lifetime risk of developing melanoma in an American born now is 1 in 50. This astronomical increase in the risk of melanoma development is etiologically tied to ultraviolet exposure from both the sun as well as from artificial tanning exposure. I have personally taken melanomas off of 18 to 25 year olds, all of whom have had a history of tanning bed exposure from their mid-teens. As a former member of the Kansas State Board of Healing Arts, I commend you for your action against false and misleading advertising. I encourage the appropriate governmental agencies to take the next logical step, which is to aggressively regulate this industry which increases the cancer risk of our citizens as much as smoking increases the risk of lung cancer (as reported by the World Health Organization in 2009). Federal regulations will spare state legislatures, medical boards, and other responsible agencies from having to regulate the tanning bed industry with the likelihood of inconsistent and incoherent results.