Rationale, design, samples, and baseline sun protection in a randomized trial on a skin cancer prevention intervention in resort environments

Academic Article


  • Introduction: Exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation during recreation is a risk factor for skin cancer. A trial evaluated an intervention to promote advanced sun protection (sunscreen pre-application/reapplication; protective hats and clothing; use of shade) during vacations. Materials and methods: Adult visitors to hotels/resorts with outdoor recreation (i.e., vacationers) participated in a group-randomized pretest-posttest controlled quasi-experimental design in 2012-14. Hotels/resorts were pair-matched and randomly assigned to the intervention or untreated control group. Sun. protection (e.g., clothing, hats, shade and sunscreen) was measured in cross-sectional samples by observation and a face-to-face intercept survey during two-day visits. Results: Initially, 41 hotel/resorts (11%) participated but 4 dropped out before posttest. Hotel/resorts were diverse (employees. = 30 to 900; latitude. = 24° 78' N to 50° 52' N; elevation. = 2. ft. to 9726. ft. above sea level), and had a variety of outdoor venues (beaches/pools, court/lawn games, golf courses, common areas, and chairlifts). At pretest, 4347 vacationers were observed and 3531 surveyed. More females were surveyed (61%) than observed (50%). Vacationers were mostly 35-60. years old, highly educated (college education. = 68%) and non-Hispanic white (93%), with high-risk skin types (22%). Vacationers reported covering 60% of their skin with clothing. Also, 40% of vacationers used shade; 60% applied sunscreen; and 42% had been sunburned. Conclusions: The trial faced challenges recruiting resorts but result showed that the large, multi-state sample of vacationers were at high risk for solar UV exposure.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Buller DB; Andersen PA; Walkosz BJ; Scott MD; Beck L; Cutter GR
  • Start Page

  • 67
  • End Page

  • 76
  • Volume

  • 46