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Swansea men have higher risk of skin cancer

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: April 25, 2014

Men in several Swansea communities have a higher than average risk of malignant melanoma.

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A new digital resource has found that men in parts of Swansea are at the highest risk level of developing malignant melanoma.

Using information from across England and Wales, the tool compares 14 different conditions - including breast cancer, heart disease and malignant melanoma at a community level to find how each area fares compared to the average risk.

Developed by the UK Small Area Health Statistics Unit at Imperial College London, the team have emphasised that this cannot be used to assess individual risk, but rather indicates the area’s overall risk factor compared to the national average.

Professor of cancer epidemiology at the University of Cambridge, Paul Pharoah, emphasised to the BBC: "This atlas does not enable anyone to judge their individual absolute risk.

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"People should definitely not use this atlas to decide where to live."

In Swansea, each condition showed a mixed picture for both men and women. The highest risk factor, however, was recorded for only one condition - malignant melanoma - for men in Bishopston, Newton, Oystermouth and West Cross. Women also had an increased risk of this type of skin cancer further towards the Gower, but areas around Gorseinon, Llansamlet and Mynyddbach showed a slightly decreased risk.

The good news is that while there are pockets of high risk for the 13 other conditions, there are also several communities which show lower than average rates for diseases in both men and women, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and lung cancer.

The records analysed were collected from the Office for National Statistics and cancer registries for 1985 to 2009. Each data file was adjusted for age, deprivation and took into account small numbers.

The online resource is available to view at envhealthatlas.co.uk.

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  • Hadoken889977  |  April 25 2014, 2:51PM

    Pretty impressive giving it rains all the time. I'm pretty sure the steel works in port talbot is responsible for so many health problems in this part of the woods, it can;t be good and it doesn't surprise me we have some funky health stats like this.

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