Cancer Causes & Control

, Volume 27, Issue 5, pp 647–659 | Cite as

Characteristics, rates, and trends of melanoma incidence among Hispanics in the USA

  • Erin Garnett
  • Julie Townsend
  • Brooke Steele
  • Meg Watson
Original paper



The purpose of this study is to describe the epidemiology of melanoma among Hispanics using data that cover nearly 100 % of the US population.


The study used population-based cancer incidence data from the National Program of Cancer Registries and the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results Program to examine melanoma incidence rates and trends among Hispanics by sex, age, race, histology, anatomic location, stage, and tumor thickness.


From 2008 to 2012, 6,623 cases of melanoma were diagnosed among Hispanics. Rates were higher among males (4.6) than among females (4.0), but females younger than age 55 had higher rates than males. The most common histologic subtype was superficial spreading melanoma (23 %). Melanomas with poorer outcomes, such as nodular (NM) and acral lentiginous melanoma (ALM), were more common among males. Hispanic females had the highest proportion of melanoma on the lower limb and hip (33.7 %), while Hispanic males had the highest proportion on the trunk (29.9 %). Incidence rates for later-stage diagnosis and thicker tumors were significantly higher among Hispanic men than among women. Incidence rates decreased significantly during 2003–2012 (AAPC = −1.4).


Clinicians and public health practitioners will need to reach the growing Hispanic population in the USA with strategies for primary prevention and early diagnosis of melanoma. Results suggest Hispanics and providers need education to increase awareness about the characteristics of melanoma among Hispanics, including types that occur on non-sun-exposed areas (ALM and NM). Skin cancer prevention and awareness interventions targeting Hispanics should be culturally relevant.


Melanoma incidence rates Melanoma incidence trends Melanoma histology Melanoma stage Anatomic location of melanoma Hispanics 



The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland (outside the USA) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Erin Garnett
    • 1
  • Julie Townsend
    • 2
  • Brooke Steele
    • 2
  • Meg Watson
    • 2
  1. 1.Advanced Technology Logistics, IncNewnanUSA
  2. 2.Division of Cancer Prevention and ControlCenters for Disease Control and PreventionAtlantaUSA

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