Content » Vol 94, Issue 5

Investigative Report

The Incidence of Melanoma is Increasing in the Susceptible Young Australian Population

Douglas Czarnecki
DOI: 10.2340/00015555-1877


The number of melanomas removed from Australians is increasing. Despite this, it has been reported that the incidence of melanoma is decreasing in the young Australian population. However, the denominator for these estimates includes individuals at low risk of melanoma, and the proportion of such individuals has changed over recent decades due to immigration. In this study, the incidence was calculated for the susceptible young population. Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics were analysed to determine the number of people younger than 30 years at low risk of developing melanoma in 1982 and 2009. Low risk people were defined as those born in Asia, the Pacific Islands, The Middle East, or Sub-Saharan Africa, or had parents born in these regions. There was a significant increase in the number of young Australians at low risk for melanoma. If these people are not included when calculating the crude rate of melanoma, the rate increased from 5.9 per 100,000 in 1982 to 6.3 in 2009. If the estimated number of young Maoris and young Aborigines is excluded from the susceptible population, the crude rate increased from 6.0 per 100,000 in 1982 to 6.8 in 2009. This is the first calculation of the rate of melanoma for the susceptible young Australian population.


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