Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Cutting The Cost Of Fall-Out From Chernobyl 15 Years After The World's Worst Nuclear Accident

Date:
October 26, 2001
Source:
Federation Of European Cancer Societies
Summary:
Chernobyl has made a chilling contribution to medical history, accounting for the largest group of human cancers associated with a known cause on a known date, ECCO 11 - the European Cancer Conference heard in Lisbon this week. Nearly 2000 cases of thyroid cancer have been linked to the world's worst nuclear accident which occurred in Ukrainian city 15 years ago - and the number is still rising.

Chernobyl has made a chilling contribution to medical history, accounting for the largest group of human cancers associated with a known cause on a known date, ECCO 11 - the European Cancer Conference heard in Lisbon today. (Tuesday 23 October)

Related Articles


Nearly 2000 cases of thyroid cancer have been linked to the world's worst nuclear accident which occurred in Ukrainian city 15 years ago - and the number is still rising.

Professor Dillwyn Williams, of The Strangeways Research Laboratory, Cambridge University, told the meeting: "Four years after the accident, an excess of thyroid cancers was noted among children who had been exposed to fall-out from the disaster. That increase has continued and new cases are still being seen in those who were children at the time of the accident".

Dr. Elaine Ron, of the US National Cancer Institute, in Bethesda, Maryland, explained: "Following external radiation exposure, the elevated risk of thyroid cancer appears to continue throughout life, but there is some indication that the risk may be highest 15 to 19 years after exposure.

External radiation is the only well established cause of cancer of the thyroid gland. People under 20 are at a significantly increased risk of thyroid cancer after exposure to isotopes of iodine. It is estimated that in the accident, the Chernobyl-4 reactor released all of the xenon gas, about half of the iodine and caesium and about three to five per cent of the remaining radioactive material.

Professor Williams said: "Exposure to isotopes of iodine gives the thyroid over a 1000 times the average dose to the rest of the body. The particular sensitivity of children to thyoid cancer after radiation exposure can be linked to a combination of a higher thyroid dose and the biology of thyroid growth - which falls to a very low level in adult life. Few of the patients with thyroid cancer have died, but help is still needed".

The UN recently marked the 15th anniversary of the disaster with an appeal for aid. According to one report, five million people in the former Soviet Union were exposed to radiation or other health hazards by the Chernobyl catastrophe. Although only 31 people died in the immediate aftermath of the accident, hundreds of thousands were reported to have abandoned entire cities and settlements within the 30 kilometre zone of extreme contamination.

Dr. Williams said: "The effects of Chernobyl differed very greatly from those after the atomic bomb explosions. In Japan, the exposure was very largely to whole body radiation from gamma rays and neutrons. After Chernobyl the exposure was to isotopes in fall-out, and apart from the inert gas xenon, the largest components were radioactive isotopes of iodine".

Post Chernobyl cancer risks are not restricted to the thyroid gland the meeting was told. Mr. Victor Chizhikov, of the Cancer Research Center, Kashirskoye, Moscow, reported that a study of former 43 Chernobyl "clean-up" workers had shown them to be at a significantly increased risk of lung cancer. Comprising 36 smokers and seven non-smokers, they all had evidence of inhaled radioactive dust in their lungs. They were compared to a control group of 21 smokers and 23 non-smokers who had never been exposed to radiation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Federation Of European Cancer Societies. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Federation Of European Cancer Societies. "Cutting The Cost Of Fall-Out From Chernobyl 15 Years After The World's Worst Nuclear Accident." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 October 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011026075752.htm>.
Federation Of European Cancer Societies. (2001, October 26). Cutting The Cost Of Fall-Out From Chernobyl 15 Years After The World's Worst Nuclear Accident. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 26, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011026075752.htm
Federation Of European Cancer Societies. "Cutting The Cost Of Fall-Out From Chernobyl 15 Years After The World's Worst Nuclear Accident." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011026075752.htm (accessed February 26, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little Might Increase Stroke Risk

Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little Might Increase Stroke Risk

Newsy (Feb. 26, 2015) People who sleep more than eight hours per night are 45 percent more likely to have a stroke, according to a University of Cambridge study. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
London Show Dissects History of Forensic Science

London Show Dissects History of Forensic Science

AFP (Feb. 25, 2015) Forensic science, which has fascinated generations with its unravelling of gruesome crime mysteries, is being put under the microscope in an exhibition of real criminal investigations in London. Duration: 00:53 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Michigan Couple Celebrates Identical Triplets

Michigan Couple Celebrates Identical Triplets

AP (Feb. 25, 2015) A suburban Detroit couple who have two older children are adjusting to life after becoming parents to identical triplets _ a multiple birth a doctor calls rare. (Feb. 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Mayor Says District of Columbia to Go Ahead With Pot Legalization

Mayor Says District of Columbia to Go Ahead With Pot Legalization

Reuters - News Video Online (Feb. 25, 2015) Washington&apos;s mayor says the District of Columbia will move forward with marijuana legalization, despite pushback from Congress. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins