- August 16, 2011 at 1:49 am
ABC News linkhttp://news.yahoo.com/video/health-15749655/excessive-tanning-is-it-an-addiction-26270926.html#crsl=%252Fvideo%252Fhealth-15749655%252Fexcessive-tanning-is-it-an-addiction-26270926.html
Frequent Tanning Bed Users Exhibit Brain Changes and Behavior Similar to Addicts, Study Finds
ScienceDaily (Aug. 10, 2011) — People who frequently use tanning beds may be spurred by an addictive neurological reward-and-reinforcement trigger, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have found in a pilot study.
This could explain why some people continue to use tanning beds despite the increased risk of developing melanoma, the most lethal form of skin cancer. The brain activity and corresponding blood flow tracked by UT Southwestern scientists involved in the study is similar to that seen in people addicted to drugs and alcohol.
"Using tanning beds has rewarding effects in the brain so people may feel compelled to persist in the behavior even though it's bad for them," said Dr. Bryon Adinoff, professor of psychiatry and senior author of the study available online and in a future print edition of Addiction Biology. "The implication is, 'If it's rewarding, then could it also be addictive?' It's an important question in the field."
About 120,000 new cases of melanoma are diagnosed in the U.S. each year, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation. People younger than 30 who use a tanning bed 10 times a year have eight times the risk of developing malignant melanoma. While public knowledge of these dangers has grown, so has the regular use of tanning beds.
In this study, participants used tanning beds on two separate occasions: one time they were exposed to ultraviolet radiation and another time special filters blocked exposure to ultraviolet radiation. Participants did not know on which session they received the real or the filtered ultraviolet exposure. At each visit, participants were asked before and after each session how much they felt like tanning. Participants were also administered a compound that allowed scientists to measure brain blood flow while they were tanning.
Dr. Adinoff, who also is a staff physician at the Veterans Affairs North Texas Health Care System, said the next step is to create technology to further study brain changes among frequent tanners.
Other UT Southwestern researchers involved in the study were Dr. Heidi Jacobe, assistant professor of dermatology; Dr. Michael Devous, professor of radiology; and Thomas Harris, senior research scientist. Former dermatology resident Dr. Cynthia Harrington served as lead author.
The study was funded by the Department of Dermatology at UT Southwestern. Dr. Steven Feldman of Wake Forest University donated the ultraviolet radiation filters used in the tanning bed, and GE Healthcare donated the radioligand, the compound that traced the brain changes.http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/cancer/articles/2011/08/15/more-evidence-tanning-beds-may-be-addictive—————————————————————————————————————————————–http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/cancer/articles/2011/08/15/more-evidence-tanning-beds-may-be-addictive
More Evidence Tanning Beds May Be Addictive
In the presence of UV radiation, reward centers in the brains of 'tanorexics' lit up, study foundBy Denise Mann
MONDAY, Aug. 15 (HealthDay News) — Frequent indoor tanners may exhibit brain changes that are similar to those seen among people who are addicted to drugs and alcohol, according to a new study that adds to a growing body of evidence suggesting that indoor tanning may be addictive.
Close to 30 million Americans visit indoor tanning salons each year despite the well-publicized risks of skin cancer associated with this practice. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is now considering a ban on indoor tanning for people under age 18 and the American Academy of Pediatrics is on record that it supports this legislation.
The new findings, released online in advance of publication in an upcoming print issue of the journal Addiction Biology, suggest that indoor tanning taps into the brain's "reward center."
"We saw brain changes that are consistent with that of other things that are considered rewarding such as money, food or drugs," explained study author Dr. Bryon Adinoff, a professor of psychiatry at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. "The same areas of the brain lit up, and we know that if something is rewarding to the brain, there is the potential for addiction."
The new study involved seven frequent tanners who said they had used tanning beds an average of about 27 of the previous 90 days.
The researchers had each participant use a tanning bed for 10-minute sessions under two conditions: in one session, the tanner was exposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, while in the other session special filters blocked such exposure. Volunteers did not know if the tanning session involved UV radiation or not.
Participants were asked before and after each session how much they felt like tanning. They also received an intravenous compound that allowed the researchers to measure brain blood flow during their tanning sessions.
The result: Indoor tanning sessions that involved UV radiation triggered activation of the brain's dorsal striatum region and the medial orbitofrontal cortex, each of which plays a role in reward and reinforcement. Sessions where UV radiation was blocked showed less of this type of brain activation, the team found.
The findings make sense to Dr. Heidi Waldorf, an associate clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City. "Like other addicts, 'tanorexics' continue to tan indoors and out despite clear warnings of the dangers," she said. "In my practice, I've seen women continue to tan after skin cancer surgery and after spending thousands of dollars on cosmetic procedures to rejuvenate their photodamaged skin."
But John Overstreet, the executive director of the Indoor Tanning Association, a Washington, D.C.-based trade group representing the indoor tanning industry, said that UV light is essential for survival.
"Some people overdo things, but that doesn't mean they are addicted," he said. "Moderation is the key, whether your UV exposure is from a tanning bed or sun."
Find out more about the dangers of UV radiation at the Skin Cancer Foundation.
Copyright © 2011 HealthDay. All rights reserved.
Really! In this case addiction is really an attraction. Further, it is UV lgiht we seek, not a tan. We want to be expsoed to UV light whether we tan or not. It seems like an oversimplification to call all UV exposure tanning!
Doug McNabb @ Aug 15, 2011 15:13:26 PM
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