FROM ISSUE #41 (04 MAY 2001 - 10 MAY 2001) | TABLE OF CONTENTS
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Nepalis generally don't sunbathe, and we don't have any beaches. But dermatologists have warned that Nepalis are not immune to a variety of skin ailments, including skin cancer. According to a pilot study on skin disease, the number of Nepalis suffering from skin-related afflictions is on the rise. Skin diseases account for 20 percent of all diseases in Nepal, and 12 to 18 percent of these afflict children. Dermatologists warn against complacence and advise that 40 percent of skin diseases can be avoided if we are more careful about protecting ourselves from direct sunlight. Allergy, shingles, scabies, ringworm, white leprosy and pimples are common diseases caused by diet, living conditions, a weak immune system, and environmental pollution. Twelve people die from skin-related diseases every year at Kathmandu's Teaching Hospital. The study indicates that leprosy and venereal diseases account for one percent of the skin diseases prevalent in the country, and that 12 percent of cancer patients suffer from skin cancer. And there is only one dermatologist for every 600,000 people.