Tanning beds send thousands to hospital annually: report

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Ultraviolet radiation exposure from indoor tanning has been known to cause cancer.

A new report highlights the alarming instances of tanning bed injuries.

The new study says an average of 3,234 people visit hospital emergency rooms every year for reasons related to indoor tanning.

According to research published in JAMA Internal Medicine, skin burns, fainting, and eye injuries were among the most common injuries documented.

Regular and occasional use of tanning beds expose people to high levels of harmful ultraviolet radiation, which is a known carcinogen.

Tanning beds are the cause of as many as 170,000 cases of skin cancer each yea, according to the CDC.

In an effort to curb the use of tanning beds, last year, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a policy that requires clear signs at tanning facilities to list the potential hazards and long-term risks.

Nearly 8% of ER visits due to indoor tanning were due to severe burns, 10 % of visits were a result of passing out, and nearly 6% were related to eye injuries.

However, the authors of the report say there is some good news: The number of indoor tanning-related injuries has declined over the last decade — from 6,487 in 2003 to 1,957 in 2012.

This may indicate fewer people are heading to tanning salons, and those are tanning may be better informed about the risks.

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