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COPH Epidemiologists Develop Skin Cancer Prevention Training for Cosmetologists
In partnership with the Melanoma Foundation of New England, and UAMS creative services, Lori Fischbach, PhD, and Mohammed El Faramawi, MD, PhD, who are faculty in the Department of Epidemiology at the UAMS Fay W. Boozman College of Public Health, developed an online training for hair stylists and manicurists, to teach them to look for suspicious skin lesions and to advise clients with suspicious lesions to see a dermatologists.
On Feb. 9, they presented a portion of their training video at the quarterly meeting of the Arkansas Cancer Coalition, which provided funding for the project. The plan is to test whether the video will led to more cosmetology students looking for suspicious lesions and talking with their clients about seeing a dermatologist. If it is effective, they plan to disseminate the training to cosmetology practitioners and students in Arkansas.
The 30-minute training addresses the risks for skin cancer associated with sun exposure and tanning bed use, identification of potentially cancerous lesions, and effective communication with customers about skin cancer risks or who need to see a doctor for a diagnosis of a suspicious mole.
The head and scalp, neck, ears and hands are common sites for skin cancer, including deadly melanoma. In rare instances, melanomas are found also on finger and toe nails. Early detection is critical to long-term survival from melanoma, but less than 40 percent of primary care physicians perform full body skin exams. Educating and enlisting cosmetologists is a smart public health response to the rising rates for melanoma and other types of skin cancer.
“A goal of the state’s cancer plan is to decrease melanoma deaths, and this educational intervention is really aimed at doing that,” Dr. Fischbach said.
Students and an instructor at a Little Rock cosmetology school have seen the video and took part in a focus group discussion about it. The response was positive.
“Cosmetologists are excited about being part of a group involved in saving lives,” Dr. Fischbach said.
COPH Epidemiologist to Test Method for Increasing Quit Line Referrals
Victor Cardenas, MD, MPH, PhD, has received a $9,500 grant from the Minority Research Center on Tobacco and Addictions (MRC) at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB). It will support Dr. Cardenas’s study, “Automated Disclosure of Smoking Status during Check-in at the UAMS Women’s Clinic Demonstration Project.” It will test a method to increase referralS to the Arkansas Tobacco Quitline using a platform to be developed by UAMS Integrated Clinical Enterprise.
The award was announced at a ceremony at UAPB on Feb. 5. Joy Jackson, PhD, Professor of Biology at UAPB, who is pursuing her MPH in Epidemiology at the UAMS Fay W. Boozman College of Public Health, is Co-investigator on the project and was also recognized at the ceremony.
Dr. Cardenas’s idea for the project came from another study he is currently conducting at the UAMS Women’s Clinic on the use of electronic cigarettes in collaboration with the UAMS College of Medicine Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
Recent Publication by COPH Epidemiologist Joseph Su, PhD, MPH
Allott EH, Farnan L, Steck SE, Arab L, Su LJ, Mishel M, Fontham ETH, Mohler JL,
Bensen JT. Statin use and prostate cancer aggressiveness: results from the population-based North Carolina-Louisiana Prostate Cancer Project. Cancer Epidemiology,
Biomarkers and Prevention, OnlineFirst. January 27, 2016; doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-15-0631.