Is cancer risk of radiation workers larger than expected?

Jacob, P.; Rühm,, W.; Walsh, L.; Blettner, M.; Hammer, G.; Zeeb, H.
December 2009
Occupational & Environmental Medicine;Dec2009, Vol. 66 Issue 12, p3
Academic Journal
Occupational exposures to ionising radiation mainly occur at low-dose rates and may accumulate effective doses of up to several hundred milligray. The objective of the present study is to evaluate the evidence of cancer risks from such low-dose-rate, moderate-dose (LDRMD) exposures. Our literature search for primary epidemiological studies on cancer incidence and mortality risks from LDRMD exposures included publications from 2002 to 2007, and an update of the UK National Registry for Radiation Workers study. For each (LDRMD) study we calculated the risk for the same types of cancer among the atomic bomb survivors with the same gender proportion and matched quantities for dose, mean age attained and mean age at exposure. A combined estimator of the ratio of the excess relative risk per dose from the LDRMD study to the corresponding value for the atomic bomb survivors was 1.21 (90% CI 0.51 to 1.90). The present analysis does not confirm that the cancer risk per dose for LDRMD exposures is lower than for the atomic bomb survivors. This result challenges the cancer risk values currently assumed for occupational exposures.


Related Articles

  • Mortality and cancer incidence following occupational radiation exposure: third analysis of the National Registry for Radiation Workers. Muirhead, C. R.; O'Hagan, J. A.; Haylock, R. G. E.; Phillipson, M. A.; Willcock, T.; Berridge, G. L. C.; Zhang, W. // British Journal of Cancer;1/13/2009, Vol. 100 Issue 1, p206 

    Mortality and cancer incidence were studied in the National Registry for Radiation Workers in, relative to earlier analyses, an enlarged cohort of 174 541 persons, with longer follow-up (to 2001) and, for the first time, cancer registration data. SMRs for all causes and all malignant neoplasms...

  • Perspectives Correspondence.  // Environmental Health Perspectives;May2003, Vol. 111 Issue 5, pa266 

    Focuses on various perspectives concerning environmental health. Carcinogenicity of ethylene bisdithiocarbamate fungicides; Concerns about using cancer risks derived from the Life Span Study cohort of Japanese atomic bomb survivor data in radiation worker compensation plans.

  • New lessons from the atomic bomb survivors. Orr, J. Stewart // British Medical Journal (Clinical Research Edition);5/28/1988, Vol. 296 Issue 6635, p1488 

    Focuses on the issuance of guidance on applying protective standards for radiation workers in Great Britain. Risk of radiation doses to cancer; Limit of effective dose; Purposes of dose limit.

  • Models, Models Everywhere—Is There a Fit for Lifetime Risks? Boice Jr., John D. // JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute;Nov2010, Vol. 102 Issue 21, p1606 

    The article discusses the use of models to predict lifetime excess cancer risks following exposure to radiation. One study proposed a biologically based model for estimating lifetime cancer risks in Japanese atomic bomb survivors based on assumptions regarding the kinetics of radiation-induced...

  • Cancer Risks After Radiation Exposure in Middle Age. Shuryak, Igor; Sachs, Rainer K.; Brenner, David J. // JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute;Nov2010, Vol. 102 Issue 21, p1628 

    Background Epidemiological data show that radiation exposure during childhood is associated with larger cancer risks compared with exposure at older ages. For exposures in adulthood, however, the relative risks of radiation-induced cancer in Japanese atomic bomb survivors generally do not...

  • Solid Cancer Incidence in Atomic Bomb Survivors Exposed In Utero or as Young Children. Preston, Dale L.; Cullings, Harry; Suyama, Akihiko; Funamoto, Sachiyo; Nishi, Nobuo; Soda, Midori; Mabuchi, Kiyohiko; Kodama, Kazunori; Kasagi, Fumiyoshi; Shore, Roy E. // JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute;3/19/2008, Vol. 100 Issue 6, p428 

    Background In utero exposure to radiation is known to increase risks of childhood cancers, and childhood exposure is associated with increased risks of adult-onset cancers. However, little is known about whether in utero exposure to radiation increases risks of adult-onset cancers. Methods Solid...

  • Studies of Mortality of Atomic Bomb Survivors. Report 13: Solid Cancer and Noncancer Disease Mortality: 1950-1997. Preston, Dale L.; Shimizu, Yukiko; Pierce, Donald A.; Suyama, Akihiko; Mabuchi, Kiyohiko // Radiation Research;Aug2012, Vol. 178 Issue 2, pAV146 

    This continues the series of general reports on mortality in the cohort of atomic bomb survivors followed up by the Radiation Effects Research Foundation. This cohort includes 86,572 people with individual dose estimates, 60% of whom have doses of at least 5 mSv. We consider mortality for solid...

  • Risk of Cancer Due to Radiation Exposure in Middle Age May Be Higher Than Previously Estimated.  // JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute;Nov2010, Vol. 102 Issue 21, pNP 

    The article focuses on a study which found that the risk of cancer associated with radiation exposure in middle-aged people may not be lower than the risk associated with exposure at younger ages. Researchers led by David J. Brenner at Columbia University in New York reanalyzed Japanese atomic...

  • Associations of Ionizing Radiation and Breast Cancer-Related Serum Hormone and Growth Factor Levels in Cancer-Free Female A-Bomb Survivors. Grant, Eric J.; Neriishi, Kazuo; Cologne, John; Eguchi, Hidetaka; Hayashi, Tomonori; Geyer, Susan; Izumi, Shizue; Nishi, Nobuo; Land, Charles; Stevens, Richard G.; Sharp, Gerald B.; Nakachi, Kei // Radiation Research;Nov2011, Vol. 176 Issue 5, p678 

    Levels of exposure to ionizing radiation are increasing for women worldwide due to the widespread use of CT and other radiologic diagnostic modalities. Exposure to ionizing radiation as well as increased levels of estradiol and other sex hormones are acknowledged breast cancer risk factors, but...


Read the Article


Sign out of this library

Other Topics