Cutaneous melanoma incidence and survival among U.S. blacks, Asian-Pacific Islanders (API) and whites were examined. Frequency distributions and age-adjusted incidence rates (cases per 100,000) by race, sex, anatomic subsite, histology and stage (frequency distribution only) and age-specific incidence rates were calculated for primary invasive cutaneous melanoma diagnosed in 1995–2001 from 36 U.S. population-based cancer registries (n = 138,725). Rate ratios with 95% confidence intervals comparing anatomic subsite and histology rates among APIs and blacks with whites were calculated. Five-year cause-specific survival rates by sex, race and histology were calculated using data from 17 Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results registries. API and black incidence rates were lower than the white rate for males (2.1 and 1.2, respectively, versus 20.6) and females (1.6 and 0.9 versus 13.6). Within each sex-race group, incidence rates generally increased with age; the increase was greatest for white males. Rate ratios for anatomic subsites and histologies were statistically significantly low, except black male and female and API male rate ratios for acral lentiginous histology. Five-year cause-specific survival rates were lowest for black males and females (77%), followed by API males (79%) and API females (84%). Further elucidation of risk factors for cutaneous melanoma in blacks and APIs and for the acral lentiginous histology in all races could assist in the design of measures to prevent and detect cutaneous melanoma.
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