Melanoma Risk in Atlantic Canada

New work from Dr. Ivan Litvinov and Dr. François Lagacé  at McGill University includes Atlantic PATH participants and highlights why Atlantic Canadians are at higher risk for developing melanoma (skin cancer). The SunFit project conducted focus groups in 22 communities across Atlantic Canada. 

Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island have the highest rates of melanoma in the country, while rates in New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador are in line with the Canadian average. The team compared UV exposure and relevant behavioural factors and found that higher-income participants had an increased risk, but that participants with a lower income were more likely to work outdoors and experience occupational sun exposure which increases their risk of developing melanoma. Further, females had less sun exposure and higher rates of sunscreen use compared to males.

Additional information:

Dr. Litvinov was interviewed on CBC’s Maritime Noon. “N.S. and P.E.I. have higher rats of skin cancer than national average. Here’s why.” August 22, 2023.

McGill University News Room. “Why men, wealthy people and maritime residents are more likely to develop skin cancer.” August 22, 2023.

Chronicle Herald article. “Dermatologist probes skin cancer rates.” September 7, 2023.