As a Mohs histologist at Vujevich Dermatology Associates in Scott, Pirain processes patients’ skin tissue, cuts it and stains it on a microscopic slide to be analyzed for cancer by a surgeon.
Seeking to better protect the public against skin cancer, she took an idea to the dermatology practice: installing free sunscreen dispensers at public parks.
“I am a parent. I am a person who carries sunscreen constantly with me at all times. And I read … a lot of articles about what goes on,” said Pirain, 39.
After the Upper St. Clair resident discussed her idea with doctors at the practice and Mt. Lebanon officials, the municipality installed a free, public sunscreen dispenser at Mt. Lebanon Park last week. Similar to a hand sanitizer dispenser, the park’s sunscreen device might be the first at a public park in the state.
“It seemed like a good thing to do for the public to increase awareness of skin cancer and to provide materials that would help prevent that serious disease,” said Rudy Sukal, acting director of Mt. Lebanon’s Public Works Department.
Most of the public is aware of the link between sun exposure and skin cancer, but cases of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, are on the rise, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.
Ultraviolet radiation — from the sun and tanning beds — is a major contributor in most cases, according to the academy.