Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Tanning Salons Fight Bogus Cancer Scare Story With Facts, ask FDA to Silence Anti-Tanning Forces

PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 11, 2002 - Toledo, OH

BIG Design
Home of SunTanning.com
3410 W Samaria
Temperance, MI 48182

Tanning Salon Industry Fights Cancer Scare Story With Facts, Ask FDA To Silence Detractors.

SUMMARY:

Tanning salon associations point out that skin cancer scare story is not only bad science, it is not even science. The tanning industry fights back after SUNBUSTERS attack sunlamp tanning with cancer scare story, pointing out that the study is so poorly done that it is not only poor science but does not deserve to be called science.

The anti tanning media blitz was arranged right before an FDA regulatory meeting regarding sunlamp regulations in Washington DC last week. Tanning Industry Members were en route to Rockville, MD to participate in FDA Regulatory Conference when news media outlets were bombarded with a well orchestrated cancer scare story, timed to break right before the meeting opened.

SunTanning.com spokesperson, Lonn Dugan, say it is all part of a monopolistic marketing conspiracy. Doctors can charge $60 for a "Light Therapy Session" he notes, while tanning salons deliver essentially the same thing for about $6.

SunTanning.com was founded in 1997 to improve the public image of tanning, improve professional communication between industry members, and to provide professional education for the tanning industry, The web based organization represents over 1000 members.

Dugan presented, on behalf of SunTanning.com's 1000+ members, at the FDA sunlamp regulatory meeting. SunTanning.com praised FDA decisions to date and asked FDA to take action to silence doctors who he says are making ill founded and slanderous claims about tanning salons.

FULL STORY:

Suntanning.com presents at FDA regulatory meeting, praises regulatory work by FDA, then calls on FDA to silence medical groups who spread cancer scare for profit. These SunBusters arranged an Anti-Tanning Media Blitz right before the meeting. "The timing was intentional, probably intended to sway the opinion of the regulators as much as the public", says Lonn Dugan, founder of SunTanning.com. Dugan called a press conference immediately following FDA Regulatory Meeting, in Rockville, Maryland at 4:00 PM, February 8, 2002, to discuss the news reports.

Tanning detractors, affectionately called Sunbusters (after the hapless ghostbusters), used the event as an opportunity to release a bogus study that claimed patrons of tanning salons were 2.5 times more likely to develop skin cancer than persons who did not use tanning salons. The study is described as bogus by industry members because it was improperly conducted, poorly controlled, and even admits that its own results are statistically meaningless. Spokespersons for Industry associations TSO and ITA agree that the study is meaningless. Don Smith of TSO says it is so full of holes that it is a "Swiss Cheese" study.

Tanning salon industry members were conducting themselves as professionals while meeting with FDA officials during a scheduled regulatory affairs conference. In addition to improving the regulations for the industry, salon owners want to fight bad science and bad press.

Suntanning.com sent a press release to Washington DC News Stations saying, "This is bad science. It's not even science." He continues his defense of the industry now, saying "We have better science that shows health benefits. They did some interviews and called it science. The real shame is that Journalists don't think deeply about what they print when this happens. Dugan says that the doctors are misinformed by their associations, or that they are actually conspiring to hurt business at tanning salons because they can charge 10 times what salons charge for UV "Light Therapy" treatments. I might go further and argue that these white coated SunBusters are a loosely knit, but single body, acting in violation of U.S. Federal Law regarding monopolies by acting to restrain free trade. They seem to be intent on harming our industry to improve their sales. They are exercising improper influence on government agencies, while they simultaneously lobby against our ability to use good science in telling our story."

Dugan also says, "There are many good scientific studies demonstrating that sunlight can prevent breast cancer, colo-rectal cancer and osteoporosis." Many more people die from these diseases than from skin cancer. Good supporting evidence for these claims can be found at the web site, http://www.suntanning.com

Our message would save far more lives than the SUNBUSTERS can save with their skin cancer message. In fact, there is an excellent study done for the U.S. Navy, by a Dr. C. Garland, that proves that sunlight actually prevents the only kind of skin cancer that is deadly.

Other health benefits include cardiovascular and muscle toning benefits. Ancient Greek Participants in the Olympic Games understood this, and exercised nude in the sun to improve the result of physical training!

Industry members would like to share the health benefits of tanning with the media to counteract bad science and bad press distributed by the Sunbusters. But U.S. Law says they are forbidden from doing this. "Guess who sponsored that law", Dugan asks? "SunBusters!"

Suntanning.com is a web community site founded by Dugan in 1997 to work on improving the public image of the tanning salon industry while serving to improve communication in a manner that contributes to the professional growth of the tanning salon industry. The web community has over 1000 members registered and is currently growing at a rate of almost 100 members per month. Sister sites are Tanlovers.com and TanningProfessionals.com

For more information contact Lonn Dugan at 1-866-TANNERS

Further information can be found at Suntanning.com

For health related news about tanning, visit this link...

http://www.suntanning.com/vboard

SunTanning.com Position Paper

Dear NewsMakers:

The sun gets a lot of bad press, but this is mostly based on old medicine and bad science.

Although we agree that repeated severe sunburns in childhood may contribute to malignant melanoma, we have to take a moment to disagree with much of what is written about sun exposure and cancer.

There are two sides to this story about sun and health. The tide is turning in the weight of scientific evidence regarding the health benefits of moderate UV exposure. Too much sun is not healthy. However, neither is too little. The benefits of moderate UV exposure far outweigh the risks.

"Hundreds or even thousands of times more people die every year from inadequate sun exposure than from too much" according to Lonn Dugan, founder of the popular SunTanning.com web site which serves the indoor tanning industry and other sun loving markets.

Epidemiologists have shown that skin cancer rates have been growing at a rock solid even though alarming logarithmic rate for over a century. They further note that social practices regarding sunbathing have had no impact on this incidence.

What this means is that increased sunbathing behavior in a culture does not cause a noticeable increase in skin cancer rates for that culture.

The rate is increasing at about the same alarming pace for all population groups, whether they live in sun drenched latitudes or sun deprived latitudes.

Since people only started exposing more skin when dressed in swimwear since the 60's, and this corresponded with an increase in seaside vacationing, there should be a corresponding blip in the graph of skin cancer rates. BUT IT US NOT THERE! (From memory, from a presentation by Prof. Dr. F. Urbach, world renowned Photobiologist and Professor Emeritus, Temple University).

It is useful to also note that you cannot prove tanning salons cause cancer either. This is mainly because it takes 20 years for these cancers to develop and tanning salons have not been around much longer than that. Any statement that says tanning salons cause cancer is patently false and is only a theory. Some studies have proven that lamps with rays never emitted in a tanning salon can burn hairless, albino mice, (nocturnal creatures that cannot tan anyway) but no good scientific study has caused cancer in humans using tanning salon equipment.

The indoor tanning salon industry serves a customer base of 30,000,000 Americans who are very health and beauty conscious. We help them meet their need to be healthy and tan. We would not sell tanning rays if we believed what we read in the popular press.

Most articles were based on old views and are incredibly one sided in covering a very two sided issue.

With so much new information coming out about the health benefits of UV exposure, we are shocked that media members of your caliber and stature would not work a little harder to present the facts. If there were a bias we would hope it would be toward promising new information about doing something that both feels good and provides health benefits at the same time!

Many publications persist in repeating old, outdated, and standard fare about sun and skin health. Such anti-tanning salon reporting is normal, but wrong.

Perhaps the unpublished FDA reports often cited by our detractors are unpublished for a reason? Are you aware that almost all of the studies most often cited by our detractors have been debunked by top researchers and even many inside FDA as inconclusive or even bad science.

Journalists have a saying about how the ordinary is NOT NEWS, but the opposite of ordinary IS NEWS. The saying goes, "When a dog bites a man, that's not news - but when a man bites a dog - now that is news."

Well.... The tanning industry is biting back against the medical, pharmaceutical and cosmetic establishment. These folks profit from making people fear the sun. We call them the SUNBUSTERS (AKA White coated specter fighting goons in the movie, "GhostBusters"). We are fighting misinformation to bring you new, better, and more scientifically sound information.

Moderate sun exposure could help many women prevent breast cancer. Moderate exposure helps prevent malignant melanoma, as well as breast, colon, and prostate cancer. (Garland and Garland, U.S. Navy Study).

UV exposure helps prevent Osteoporosis.(Dr Holick, Boston University). Here is how. The skin can produce Vitamin D when exposed to the sun. The Vitamin D is needed to bond to the calcium in your diet so that the body can deliver it to you bones. This is called the Calcium Uptake Mechanism. Without Vitamin D in your diet, you can take all the calcium pills you want and you will not get much benefit from it. The Vitamin D in your milk may prevent rickets, but is not nearly enough to fuel the calcium uptake mechanism. (From memory after hearing Dr. Holick speak)

Dr Michael Hollick, is also doing research funded in part by the Indoor Tanning Association, to show that vitamin D is produced in the skin, and that it can, in vitro, reverse cancer cell proliferation - returning a cell population from cancerous to normal.

THIS LAST IS CUTTING EDGE STUFF !

Here is a nugget for you: Sunscreens cause more skin cancer than they prevent.

Here is one more nugget: Sunbeds are classified as Class 1 Medical Devices by the FDA - which means they offer real health benefits with very low risk of harmful consequence. They used to be classifed as Class 2 Devices, which means they are not thought to be less dangerous than in the past. This fact does not square with the commonly quoted statements by SUNBUSTERS about there being no known health benefits from tanning. Doctors have been wrong before. And they are wrong again. Maybe dead wrong!

One final nugget: Since many health publications and web sites have supported he PINK RIBBON campaign, about breast cancer awareness, you might be interested to know that there is a direct correlation between sun deprived parts of the world and the incidence of breast cancer. Increased sun exposure as you move toward the equator seems to help prevent breast cancer.

The same can be said about prostate and colon cancer. Your readers might be interested in this.

For those who cannot get outdoor sun, for whatever reason, a tanning salon is a good alternative as part of a health lifestyle. That is why our slogan at SunTanning.com is, "Today is a good day to be healthy and tan" tm.

For a great deal more information about the health benefits of moderate sun exposure, please visit http://www.suntanning.com and click on the various links about tanning and health. Then visit our message board link to the discussion forums. The direct link is at http://www.suntanning.com/forum/boards There is a forum of special interest regarding these issues. It is titled "THE TRUTH ABOUT THE SUN AND YOUR HEALTH."

We thank you for your consideration of our point of view. I hope you will share our thoughts with your readers.
Please feel free to contact me if we can help you any further as you report on this topic this season.

Sincerely,
Lonn Dugan, webmaster@suntanning.com
Certification Training Coordinator for Tanning Salon Operator Training
http://www.suntanning.com
http://www.bigdesign.net - Tel: 734-854-4558


PARTING THOUGHTS

Media Taken for Fools !

SunBusters Up to Old Tricks, using numbers to tell lies... Media swallowing camels whole...

Interviewing 500 People who live in one state about a medical history is not a study. It is a PR event. It is not bad science, it is not even science.

The study released last week said tanning salons increased skin cancer risks by factor of 2.5. But the study was not properly controlled for diet or heridity. Besides, epidemiologists say an increase of less than 3 in this kind of study is statistically INSIGNIFICANT !

I could prove that breathing causes death with an interview based study, or that sex causes divorce....

THIS IS NOT SCIENCE ! Maybe we should do a "STUDY" about death rates among persons who had visited a Geriatric Medicine clinic to prove that visiting such a clinic will increase your chances of death by a factor of 10 in the next 12 months.... The fact that people die without going to such a clinic would, of course, be data that is not consequential to the study, so we would not have to consider that material. Oh yeah, how about if we throw out the high and low scores, limiting the data we use to the one part that supports our hypothesis...

What is really sad is that more or less educated persons, (JOURNALISTS) are swallowing these lies and repeating them without doing any critical thinking.

AMAZING ! Some day, a good journalist will dig into this story and the truth will come out. Then more people will tan at salons and more people will be healthy!

The Sun Is Good For You !

At SunTanning.com, we say "Today is a good day to be healthy and tan !" sm

Lonn Dugan
BIG Design
home of SunTanning.com
Toll Free 1-866-TANNERS
3410 W Samaria
Temperance, MI 48182
HAPPY TANNING !

Home of http://www.suntanning.com and http://www.tanlovers.com

Today is a good day to be healthy and tan tm.

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Originally Posted on 5/31/2005 10:43:23 AM

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