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Does sun exposure increase my risk for Kaposi sarcoma?

Diana Meeks
Diana Meeks on behalf of Sigma Nursing
Family Practitioner

Unlike other types of cancer that affect the skin, Kaposi sarcoma is not affected by sun exposure. The cancer is caused by the Kaposi sarcoma herpesvirus (herpesvirus 8), which affects the cells that line blood vessels and lymphatic vessels. The tumors begin in these vessels and then spread to the skin, which is where it forms visible patches of purple or brown skin. Even though symptoms may be visible on the skin's surface, it doesn't mean that exposing your skin to the sun increases the risk for the disease.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.