Seasonal and Geographic Patterns in Tanning Using Real-Time Data From Google Trends | Cancer Screening, Prevention, Control | JAMA Dermatology | JAMA Network
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Research Letter
February 2016

Seasonal and Geographic Patterns in Tanning Using Real-Time Data From Google Trends

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Dermatology and Skin Science, University of British Columbia, and Photomedicine Institute, Vancouver Coastal Health, Vancouver, Canada
JAMA Dermatol. 2016;152(2):215-217. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2015.3008

The incidence of skin cancer is increasing, partly due to the usage of tanning beds.1-3 Few studies have considered the temporal pattern of tanning, with most of the previous studies using cross-sectional data from surveys that are prone to bias of memory recall by individual participants. Herein, we demonstrate a novel methodology and use Internet search data to elucidate seasonality and peak interest times in tanning practices.

The data in this study were collected from Google Trends.4 For a given search term, Google Trends computes how many searches have been done relative to the total number of searches done on Google.