Outdoor sports and risk of ultraviolet radiation-related skin lesions in children: evaluation of risks and prevention

Authors

  • E. Mahé,

    1. Research Unit EA 4339 ‘Skin, Environment, and Cancer’, Ambroise Paré University Hospital, Boulogne-Billancourt, University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, France
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  • A. Beauchet,

    1. Research Unit EA 4339 ‘Skin, Environment, and Cancer’, Ambroise Paré University Hospital, Boulogne-Billancourt, University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, France
    2. Department of Public Health, Ambroise Paré University Hospital, University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Boulogne-Billancourt, France
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  • M. de Paula Corrêa,

    1. Laboratoire Atmosphères, Milieux, Observations Spatiales, Service d’Aéronomie (LATMOS), CNRS, Institut Pierre Simon Laplace, Pierre et Marie Curie University, Paris, France
    2. Natural Resources Institute, Federal University of Itajubá, Itajubá, Brazil
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  • S. Godin-Beekmann,

    1. Laboratoire Atmosphères, Milieux, Observations Spatiales, Service d’Aéronomie (LATMOS), CNRS, Institut Pierre Simon Laplace, Pierre et Marie Curie University, Paris, France
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  • M. Haeffelin,

    1. Site Instrumental de Recherche par Télédétection Atmosphérique (SIRTA), Institut Pierre Simon Laplace, Ecole Polytechnique, Palaiseau, France
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  • S. Bruant,

    1. Department of Public Health, Ambroise Paré University Hospital, University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Boulogne-Billancourt, France
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  • F. Fay-Chatelard,

    1. Research Unit EA 4339 ‘Skin, Environment, and Cancer’, Ambroise Paré University Hospital, Boulogne-Billancourt, University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, France
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  • F. Jégou,

    1. Laboratoire Atmosphères, Milieux, Observations Spatiales, Service d’Aéronomie (LATMOS), CNRS, Institut Pierre Simon Laplace, Pierre et Marie Curie University, Paris, France
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  • P. Saiag,

    1. Research Unit EA 4339 ‘Skin, Environment, and Cancer’, Ambroise Paré University Hospital, Boulogne-Billancourt, University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, France
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  • P. Aegerter

    1. Department of Public Health, Ambroise Paré University Hospital, University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Boulogne-Billancourt, France
    2. Research Unit EA 2506 ‘Health, Environment, and Ageing’, Ambroise Paré University Hospital, University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Boulogne-Billancourt, France
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  • Present address: Service de Dermatologie, Hôpital Victor Dupouy, 69 rue du Lieutenant-Colonel Prud’hon, 95100 Argenteuil, France.

  • Funding sources
    This study was carried out within the framework of the RISC-UV project, funded by the French Interdisciplinary Groupement d’Intérêt Scientifique (GIS) Climat Environnement Société, and the University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, France; and the Tête Brûlée project, funded by the French Ligue contre le Cancer, the CPAM92 (Caisse Primaire d’Assurance Maladie des Hauts-de-Seine), and the University of Versailles-Saint Quentin en Yvelines, France.

  • Conflicts of interest
    None declared.

Emmanuel Mahé.
E-mail: emmanuel.mahe@ch-argenteuil.fr

Summary

Background  Excessive ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure can cause skin cancers, skin photoageing and cataracts. Children are targeted by sun-protection campaigns because high sun exposure and sunburn in childhood increase the risk of melanoma in adulthood. Little information is available about UV radiation risk and exposure in children who take part in outdoor sports.

Objective  To evaluate the risk of developing UV radiation-induced skin lesions run by children who practise outdoor sports, and UV radiation exposure and sun-protection measures during a soccer tournament.

Methods  Firstly, we evaluated the relationship between melanocytic naevus – a skin lesion linked with exposure to UV radiation – and outdoor sports in 660 11-year-old children. Secondly, we used the occasion of a 1-day soccer tournament held in the spring to evaluate UV radiation-protective measures used by soccer players and the public. We also evaluated the UV radiation index and cloud cover during the tournament, and calculated the UV radiation dose and minimal erythema dose depending on skin phototype.

Results  The naevus count and acquired naevus count measured over the 2 years of the study were higher in the 344 children who practised outdoor sports. Sun-protective measures were insufficient for soccer players and the public.

Conclusions  This study shows that outdoor sports increase the risk of developing UV radiation-induced skin lesions in childhood. During a 1-day soccer tournament held in the spring, children and their parents were inadequately protected against the sun. These results suggest that sun-protection campaigns should be aimed at children who practise popular outdoor sports.

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