Keeping Teens Out of Tanning Beds

FDA panel meets to discuss safety of tanning beds

ByLara Salahi via via logo
March 24, 2010, 6:36 PM

March 25, 2010— -- Katie Donnar, 18, of Vincennes, Ind., was a cheerleader in middle school when she talked her mother into letting her use a tanning bed twice a week.

"Everyone else was tan and I didn't want to be the odd one," Donnar said. "So I tanned so I could fit in."

In high school, Donnar began competing in beauty pageants, so her mother bought her a personal tanning bed. Donnar said she began tanning more frequently.

While preparing for the Miss Indiana pageant, she discovered a brown spot on her leg that she had never noticed before, she said. And, at age 17, Donnar was diagnosed with an early stage of melanoma -- the deadliest form of skin cancer.

"As a 17-year-old I was just so confused," she said. "The people I knew with skin cancer were a lot older and had been in the sun their [whole] life."

Click here for tips on how to spot the warning signs of skin cancer.

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