Almirall Launches AK Global Day Campaign to Raise Awareness of Actinic Keratosis and Sun Exposure Risks

Almirall Launches AK Global Day Campaign to Raise Awareness of Actinic Keratosis and Sun Exposure Risks

(IN BRIEF) Almirall’s new data highlights the alarming lack of awareness regarding actinic keratosis (AK), a common precancerous dermatological condition linked to sun exposure, with more than one-third of affected individuals unaware of its causes. The survey, conducted across Spain, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States, underscores the need for increased education about AK, especially given that 60% of squamous cell carcinomas stem from AK lesions. Almirall’s AK Global Day campaign aims to shed light on the disease’s prevalence and its association with prolonged sun exposure, urging regular skin check-ups to detect AK lesions early and prevent cancer progression. Experts emphasize the importance of early identification and treatment to mitigate the risk of disease advancement.

(PRESS RELEASE) BARCELONA, 28-May-2024 — /EuropaWire/ — Actinic keratosis (AK) is one of the most common diagnoses made by dermatologists, with an estimated prevalence of 13.3% in the European population.2 In recent years, the incidence of AK has gone up – mainly due to an ageing population, and changes in people´s behaviors which lead to increased exposure to UV radiation. To raise awareness of actinic keratosis and the risks of prolonged sun exposure, Almirall has recently released new data revealing that more than one third of people who have suffered actinic keratosis don’t know what causes it1.

Overexposure to sun light over time can lead to the development of actinic keratosis. Despite this, most people have never gotten their skin checked by a professional (57.80%) and half of Europe’s population gets sunburned at least once a year1. This figure increases drastically in the 35-44 age group, with more than six out of ten people getting sunburned at least once a year.1 Actinic keratosis (AK) is the most common precancerous dermatological condition.[1] It is estimated that 60% of squamous cell carcinoma, the second most common form of skin cancer, develop from AK lesions.[2]

Almirall presented this new data collected in a survey of more than 2,500 participants over the age of 35 in Spain, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States as part of the launch of its AK Global Day campaign “Stay Vigilant’’. On 24th May, AK Global Day presents the opportunity to highlight the low awareness of this highly prevalent disease, which can progress to cancer without appropriate care. This year’s campaign focuses on the relationship between the disease and prolonged exposure to sun light, one of its main causes. It aims at encouraging people to perform regular skin check-ups to detect AK lesions as early as possible and recognise them as a call to action to seek support from health professionals.

Last year, Almirall research discovered that 85% of those surveyed were unaware of the existence of actinic keratosis. Following these insights, this year Almirall has worked to understand the degree of knowledge about the disease in society.

“Actinic keratosis lesions are closely related to overexposure to sun´s UV light. This year´s survey data show that there is still a significant lack of awareness of the long-term risks of excessive sun exposure without adequate protection. Addressing this lack of awareness is a key factor in preventing the development of actinic keratosis lesions as pre-forms of cancer,” stated Dr. Volker Koscielny, Almirall’s Chief Medical Officer.

“It is crucial to remember that certain lesions have the potential to develop into skin cancer. Actinic keratosis, in particular, can progress into Squamous Cell Carcinoma if left untreated. That is why identifying and treating actinic keratosis lesions early is essential to reduce the risk of disease progression.” said Dr. Javier Cañueto, Head of the Department of Dermatology at Complejo Asistencial Universitario de Salamanca.

About the Almirall survey

In 2023, Almirall surveyed approximately 500 people over 35 years of age in each of the following countries:  Spain, Italy, Germany, the UK, and the US.  Totaling 2,543 responses, of which 2,496 were valid, the survey asked 15 questions designed to understand the public’s sun protection behaviors and their awareness of, and attitudes towards, actinic keratosis. In terms of demographics, respondents were distributed as follows: 60.82% of respondents were between 35 and 54 years of age, 36.94% between 55 and 74, and 2.24% were 75 or older, whereas 55,96% identified as female and 44,04% as male.

About Almirall

Almirall is a global pharmaceutical company dedicated to medical dermatology. We closely collaborate with leading scientists, healthcare professionals, and patients to deliver our purpose: to transform the patients’ world by helping them realize their hopes and dreams for a healthy life. We are at the forefront of science to deliver ground-breaking, differentiated medical dermatology innovations that address patients´ needs.

Almirall, founded in 1944 and headquartered in Barcelona, is publicly traded on the Spanish Stock Exchange (ticker: ALM). Almirall (total revenue in 2023: €898.8 MM, 1900 employees globally) has direct presence in 21 countries and marketed products in over 100.

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Legal warning

This document includes only summary information and is not intended to be exhaustive. The facts, figures and opinions contained in this document, in addition to the historical ones, are “forward-looking statements”. These statements are based on the information currently available and the best estimates and assumptions that the company considers reasonable. These statements involve risks and uncertainties beyond the control of the company. Therefore, actual results may differ materially from those declared by such forward-looking statements. The company expressly waives any obligation to revise or update any forward-looking statements, goals or estimates contained in this document to reflect any changes in the assumptions, events or circumstances on which such forward-looking statements are based, unless required by the applicable law.

[1] Skin Cancer Foundation. Actinic Keratosis Overview. Available at:,to%20ultraviolet%20(UV)%20radiation

January 2021.

[2] Thamm J, et al. Diagnosis and therapy of actinic keratosis. March 2024

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SOURCE: Almirall, S.A.


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