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December 1957

Skin Cancer: Some Ethnic Differences

Author Affiliations

M.P.H.,; Honolulu

AMA Arch Derm. 1957;76(6):737-739. doi:10.1001/archderm.1957.01550240055011

Skin cancer is 45 times as common among Caucasians as among non-Caucasians in Honolulu, Hawaii. This was revealed in an undertaking sponsored by private physicians and governmental and volunteer agencies in 1955 and 1956.

Cooperation Can Solve Problems

The cooperative efforts of private physicians and governmental and volunteer agencies can elucidate problems not easily solved by independent action. Such cooperative effort was utilized in a skin cancer project designed to determine the incidence of skin cancer in the various ethnic groups in Hawaii.

The island of Oahu which makes up most of Honolulu County lies at about 21 degrees north latitude. The climate is mild; the percentage of available sunshine is high, and the average temperature is 75 F. The peoples of Hawaii represent several distinct ethnic groups, the major ones being noted in Table 1.