Skin Cancer

This information is useful for children, adults, and older adults
woman touching skin on her face, who possibly has skin cancer

Credit: Getty Images

While you may enjoy your time in the sun, bear in mind that skin cancer is caused by ultraviolet light that comes from the sun’s rays. Over time, sunlight exposure can cause damage to the DNA of the skin.

“While anybody can develop skin cancer, people with lightly colored eyes, hair, and skin and who have a family history of skin cancer are at increased risk,” says David J. Leffell, MD, chief of Dermatologic Surgery and Cutaneous Oncology at Yale Medicine. Repeated exposure to the sun is another risk, which can affect people who work outdoors. Having experienced blistering sunburns in childhood is another risk for developing skin cancer, he says, which can take years to surface.

At Yale Medicine, experts diagnose and treat all forms of skin cancer—both melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer—using the most advanced techniques. Because our doctors are also scientists, they perform research to advance the understanding of skin cancers and their treatment.