The influence of ethnicity, gender, and Fitzpatrick skin type on high school students' ultraviolet light risk awareness and behavior

Norma S. Magee, George A. Sifuentes, Tatsuo Uchida, Richard F. Wagner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Ultraviolet light (UVL) exposure is believed to play a major role in a wide array of skin diseases that have an enormous functional, psychological, and cosmetic impact. A cross-sectional survey of 303 high school students from an ethnically diverse school district was used to evaluate the roles of ethnicity, gender, and Fitzpatrick skin type (FST) on UVL risk awareness and behavior. Although ethnicity and FST were significantly associated (P<.0001), and Caucasian students with FSTs I and II were more likely to experience sunburn during the summer than students from other ethnic groups (P<.0001), FST was not predictive of sunburn recall by Hispanic students (P=.12). Female students had less weekend sun exposure than males (P=.020) and used more sunscreen (P=.004), but paradoxically reported more sunburns (P=.018). Ethnicity, gender, and FST are all important variables for understanding and addressing UVL risk awareness and behavior in high school students.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)696-698
Number of pages3
JournalCosmetic Dermatology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2006
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Dermatology

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