Case scenario

Matt is a healthy 30-year-old builder who spends his working week outdoors on construction sites and most Sundays board-riding at the beach. He has come to the pharmacy to ask for advice on a sunscreen to buy. He admits he hasn’t been good at protecting his skin from the sun, but his uncle recently died of melanoma, so he wants to be more vigilant.

What recommendations would you make to Matt about sunscreens and other sun protection measures? 

He also says his girlfriend is concerned about titanium products causing cancer. How would you allay his fears?

Learning objectives

After successful completion of this CPD activity, pharmacists should be able to:

  • Discuss the need for sunscreen use in Australia
  • Describe the features of different sunscreen types and how they work
  • Discuss adverse effect claims and misconceptions about sunscreens
  • Translate knowledge into practice when advising on sunscreen use.

Competency standards (2016) addressed: 1.1, 1.3, 1.5, 2.3, 3.2, 3.5

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Introduction

Australia is the skin cancer capital of the world.1 Two in three Australians will be diagnosed with skin cancer by the age of 70.2,3

It is estimated that each year more than 11,500 Australians are diagnosed with melanoma and about 434,000 are treated for a non-melanoma skin cancer.1 In Australia, more than 80% of new cancer diagnoses each year are skin cancers

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