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Outdoor Work Increases Aging, AK Incidence 4-Fold

People who work outdoors are more likely to have facial wrinkles and actinic keratoses, according to the findings of a recent study of Danish workers.

In the clinical, cross-sectional study, the researchers investigated the occurrence of facial wrinkles, actinic keratosis, keratinocyte cancer, and melanocytic nevi among 234 Danish outdoor and indoor workers. They also assessed semi-objective measures of work-related solar UV radiation exposure based on a combination of dosimetry and self-reported patient factors including smoking status, skin type, and welding.
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The researchers found significantly positive associations between work-related solar UV radiation and occurrence of facial wrinkles. “Actinic keratosis was associated to status as outdoor work (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 4.272; 95% CI 1.045-17.471) and age (adjusted OR 1.166; 95% CI 1.077‐1.262),” the researchers said, adding that it was twice as common among outdoor workers compared with indoor workers (10.3% vs 5.1%, respectively). Older age was negatively associated with the occurrence of melanocytic nevi, they added.

In addition, they found only 2 diagnosed cases of keratinocyte cancer.

“Outdoor work in Denmark is associated with increased occurrence of facial wrinkles and actinic keratosis from solar ultraviolet radiation exposure, thus justifying sun safety at Danish workplaces from a clinical perspective,” the researchers concluded.


Grandahl K, Olsen J, Friis KBE, Mortensen OS, Ibler KS. Photoaging and actinic keratosis in Danish outdoor and indoor workers. Photodermatol Photoimmunol Photomed. 2019;35(4):201-207. doi:10.1111/phpp.1245

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