A new medical study is out that ties tanning bed use to an increased risk of contracting cancer, listing it among the top cancer causes, rating them as deadly as arsenic and mustard gas.
With the climate in Las Vegas now turning seasonally colder, this has magnified the intrinsic business and economic challenges faced by Las Vegas’ indoor tanning industry practitioners.
For years, scientists have described tanning beds and ultraviolet radiation as “probable carcinogens.”
The new cumulative study is a result of analyzing about 20 tanning bed studies which concluded the dramatic risk of skin cancer occurs with continued use. The study released in July by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the cancer arm of the World Health Organization, said skin cancer risk is increased by 75 percent for those who use tanning beds before age 30.
The new cancer classification means tanning beds and other sources of ultraviolet radiation are definite causes of cancer, alongside tobacco, the hepatitis B virus and chimney sweeping, among others.
Most lights used in tanning beds give off mainly ultraviolet radiation, which causes skin and eye cancer, according to the International Agency for Cancer Research.
The research was published online in the medical journal Lancet Oncology by experts at the International Agency for Research on Cancer in Lyon.
Nationwide, the $2.7 billion tanning salon industry is expected to experience a 5.1 percent decline this year as the negative impacts of a down economy and the study play out, according to market research firm IBIS World Inc.