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FDA says tanning beds and booths must carry skin cancer warning

(Reuters) - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said tanning beds and booths now have to carry a warning label that they should not be used by people below the age of 18 because of a higher risk of skin cancer.

The regulator also said makers of tanning beds and booths now have to obtain regulatory approval before putting them on the market. (http://link.reuters.com/qyz69v)

The FDA said it imposed the new requirements after deciding that tanning beds and booths that use ultraviolet lamps pose a moderate risk of causing skin cancer, up from the previous classification of low-risk.

The decision is based on a study by the American Academy of Dermatology that found people exposed to ultraviolet radiation from indoor tanning faced a 59 percent higher risk of melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer.

"Repeated UV exposure from sunlamp products poses a risk of skin cancer for all users - but the highest risk for skin cancer is in young persons under the age of 18 and people with a family history of skin cancer," Jeffrey Shuren, director of the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health, said in a statement.

Marketing materials for tanning beds and booths will be required to include a warning that people repeatedly exposed to UV radiation should be regularly tested for skin cancer.

The warning against use by people under the age of 18 has to displayed on each device in a so-called black-box warning, the most serious warning that the FDA can require on a drug or device.

(Reporting by Vrinda Manocha in Bangalore; Editing by Kirti Pandey)

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