Do Black People Get Skin Cancer?

Well black skin contains more melanin than Caucasian, correct? Wouldn't the increase of melanin cause them to be less likely to get skin cancer? The question is: Do black people have less of a chance of getting skin cancer than caucasians people?

asked by Miriam in Men's Health | 6773 views | 09-25-2009 at 11:33 PM

Skin cancer occurs from a mutation at the cellular level. It not entirely related to skin color, although Caucasians are more susceptible to melanoma skin cancer from too much exposure to the sun's radiation.

It's rare for blacks to get sun cancer or sun burns. It's usually African Americans (who are usually mixed at some time in their relatively recent genealogical history), very light-skinned blacks, and mixed blacks that get burned more easily than other blacks. There are very light-skinned blacks in many parts of Africa that do not get burned. It's the melanin that protects them from this. But I also find that I can't retain heat as easily as white skin can. I'm always freezing in all seasons (except for summer and spring sometimes) but most Canadians are fine. The distinguishing characteristics between races arise because they help them survive the climates that is typical for them to live (ie. blacks in Africa, whites in Europe, Asians in Asia, etc).

Also, contrary to common perception, people with dark skin are more likely to die from skin cancer than those with fairer skin, warn US researchers.

answered by Billy | 09-25-2009 at 11:35 PM

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