Occurrence of nonmelanoma skin cancers on the hands after UV nail light exposure

Arch Dermatol. 2009 Apr;145(4):447-9. doi: 10.1001/archdermatol.2008.622.


Background: Exposure to tanning beds, which contain mostly high-dose UV-A emitters, is a known cause of photoaging. Evidence is also accumulating for an association between tanning bed use and the development of skin cancer. Another source of high-dose UV-A is UV nail lights, available for use in the home and in beauty salons.

Observations: Two healthy middle-aged women with no personal or family history of skin cancer developed nonmelanoma skin cancers on the dorsum of their hands. Both women report previous exposure to UV nail lights.

Conclusions: It appears that exposure to UV nail lights is a risk factor for the development of skin cancer; however, this observation warrants further investigation. In addition, awareness of this possible association may help physicians identify more skin cancers and better educate their patients.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Beauty Culture*
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / etiology*
  • Female
  • Hand*
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Nails
  • Neoplasms, Radiation-Induced*
  • Skin Neoplasms / etiology*
  • Ultraviolet Rays / adverse effects*