Tuesday, September 6, 2011

WTC exposure and cancer

Source: Dept of Defense, Wikimedia
A new study from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City has found that first responders at the World Trade Center in September 2001 are at a higher risk of developing cancer. The National Cancer Institute reported on the study published in Lancet last week that reviewed 7 years of medical records for thousands of firefighters who responded to Ground Zero after the Sept 11 attacks.

The firefighters who were exposed to the disaster site were 19 percent more likely to develop cancer than non-exposed colleagues, and 10 percent more likely to develop cancer than the general population.

The study confirms what many have feared since lung disorders cropped up in WTC first responders early in the past decade. The reasons for the increased disease risk is likely due to contaminants in the air after the towers collapsed - asbestos, glass fibers, lead, and toxic chemicals. However, the specific site of cancer development varied and some questions remain. Read the official press release by the researchers.

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