Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 2022



Skin cancer incidence has increased within the last 40 years. It accounts to 1 in 3 cancer diagnoses worldwide. (1) Sunscreen serves as a protective barrier against the harmful effects of sun exposure such as skin cancer. (2) Despite the advantages of using sunscreen, studies suggest that it is being under-utilized. (3) The preliminary goal of this research is to develop, validate and standardize a questionnaire to assesses the sunscreen utilization of adolescents and adults in both Mexico and the United States along the Rio Grande Valley


A questionnaire in both English and Spanish has been developed to assess sunscreen utilization and sun exposure of the surveyees. We will perform face validity, reliability with test-retest approach, internal consistence with alpha Cronbach, intraclass correlation in clusters (i.e.: family, schools or clinics), sensitivity to detect contrasts

The results of the survey will be analyzed using a 2k factorial design.

Expected results:

Using the 2k factorial design, we aim to assess the differences of sunscreen use amongst the following groups: Male versus female surveyees, adolescent versus adult surveyees and people residing in the United States versus residing in Mexico. The obtained statistics will help to calculate sample sizes in future studies.

Future endeavors:

Intervening with adolescents who do not utilize sunscreen well is something we look forward to partaking in: both locally and through policy change.

After obtaining preliminary data with the questionnaire, we plan to do further studies regarding the relationship between circulating vitamin D levels, sun exposure, and sunscreen usage.

Affiliations: 1. School of Medicine. UTRGV. Edinburg. Texas. 2. CEDIAMET, UMAN. Reynosa. Mexico. 3. Universidad Autonoma de Tamaulipas. Reynosa, Mexico. 4. Private practice. Laredo. Texas. 5. Population Health & Biostatistics. UTRGV. Harlingen. Texas.

Academic Level

medical student

Available for download on Monday, June 23, 2025