Scotland's skin cancer rate up 50% in decade

Extreme sunburn can lead to skin cancer Credit: PA

New figures released show that the number of people with skin cancer in Scotland has increased by more than 50% in the last decade.

Official statistics show that two out of every five people will have some form of cancer in their lifetime.

Cancer was diagnosed 30,125 times in 2011, up from 26,150 in 2001, attributed largely to being a result of having an ageing population.

South of Scotland MSP and Liberal Democrat health spokesman Jim Hume has urged the government to do more to promote healthy living.

He said:

"Whilst it is an encouraging sign that mortality rates for cancer are falling, the trends within these statistics demonstrate the need for the Government and for us as individuals to do everything we can to avoid it.

"The long-term decline in lung cancer in males has been attributed in part to fewer men smoking, where rises in other types of cancer have been pointed to an increase in obesity and alcohol consumption.

"The Scottish Government must do more to promote healthy lifestyles in Scotland. It is clear that Scotland's relationship with alcohol and food must change if we are to tackle the menace of cancer in our families and communities."