AW: AW: AW: AW: [ RadSafe ] Cameron's refutation of "Alara Does Work" - Preemployment physicals
John R Johnson
idias at interchange.ubc.ca
Mon Jul 10 13:24:32 CDT 2006
Thanks for this.
John R Johnson, Ph.D.
President, IDIAS, Inc
4535 West 9-Th Ave
Vancouver B. C.
idias at interchange.ubc.ca
From: radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl [mailto:radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl]On
Behalf Of Ruth Sponsler
Sent: July 10, 2006 11:11 AM
To: John Jacobus; Rainer.Facius at dlr.de; rjgunter at chpconsultants.com;
radsafe at radlab.nl
Subject: Re: AW: AW: AW: AW: [ RadSafe ] Cameron's refutation of "Alara
Does Work" - Preemployment physicals
Greetings to RadSafe!
"this is the only study that does not show a
"healthy worker" effect"
I'm going to have to question that statement. It's
necessary to look at a broader range of
epidemiological studies than just those that concern
nuclear workers in order to gain a perspective of
whether or not studies show 'healthy worker effects.'
Although many studies of e.g. petroleum workers show a
'healthy worker effect,' I can easily find studies of
other sorts of workers that have increased SMR
compared to control populations - e.g. the lack of a
'healthy worker effect.'
Several of these studies concern workers that most of
us encounter frequently in our daily lives (unless
Supermarket meat packers: "Among women, an SMR of 1.6
(95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.1-2.2) and a PMR
of 1.5 (95% CI 1.0-2.0) for lung cancer were found.
For men, the SMR for cancer of the buccal cavity and
pharynx was 1.8 (95% CI 1.0-3.0), and for colon cancer
it was 1.5 (95% CI 1.1-2.1). "
Meatcutters - "Abattoir workers had an SMR of 3.73 (P
less than .05) for diseases of blood and blood-forming
organs; workers in meat-packing plants had an SMR of
2.08 (P less than .01) for liver cirrhosis; and
workers in the meat department of grocery
stores/supermarkets had an SMR of 2.02 (P less than
.01) for diabetes"
Meat department of supermarkets: "At least a threefold
risk of death was observed both for myeloid leukaemia
and non-Hodgkin's lymphomas among workers in the meat
department of retail food stores." (Dr. Matanoski was
one of the co-authors of this study)
Cohort of self employed butchers from Geneva,
Switzerland: "There were significant excesses in
incidence and mortality from colorectal cancer, cancer
of the prostate, and all malignant neoplasms, and in
incidence of cancer of the liver"
Airline crew - Flying enables one to 'travel around':
"The SMR for all cancers (n = 21) was 0.71 (95% CI:
0.41, 1.18). The authors found a high number of deaths
from acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (SMR = 40; 95%
CI: 28.9, 55.8) and from aircraft accidents among the
(in all seriousness, studies of airline crew are quite
relevant to radiation exposure)
Admittedly, these studies of meat cutters et al. did
not compare workers to workers, as did the shipyard
worker study, and they may have some other faults.
Would you care to point out some of the faults of the
studies above? One fault that I can pick out almost
immediately is, 'Do meatcutters have a different diet
from the rest of the population, especially if they
are able to take any food home from work?'
(By the way, I'm not planning on running down and
applying at my local supermarket for a job back in the
meat dept). ;-)
--- John Jacobus <crispy_bird at yahoo.com> wrote:
> My point is that there is more to the study that at
> its first reporting. As noted by Dr. Boice, the
> that this is the only study that does not show a
> "healthy worker" effect should raise concerns. Of
> course, many studies may show a bias, but this one
> beyond the pale. Again, proof of a theory is based
> more than just one study. In science there is a
> continual search for evidence to prove or disprove a
> I do think that it is interesting that this shipyard
> study was not cited in the BEIR VII (Phase 2)
> Instead, there is reference to the Portsmouth
> report that started this comprehensive study is.
> "Rinsky and colleagues (1981) considered exposure to
> anumber of workplace carcinogens in a case-control
> study of lung cancer among civilian employees of the
> Portsmouth naval shipyard. Asbestos and welding
> by-products were found to confound the association
> between radiation exposure and lung cancer risk in
> this population, where radiation workers appear to
> more heavily exposed to asbestos and welding fumes
> than other workers. The unadjusted lung cancer odds
> ratio for workers with a cumulative dose of 10
> 49.99 mSv was 1.8 (95% CI 1.1, 3.1) compared to
> with no history of radiation exposure; adjustment
> asbestos and welding fumes reduced it slightly to
> (95% CI 1.0, 2.9)."
> --- Rainer.Facius at dlr.de wrote:
> > Dear John:
> > True, but frankly, NO epidemiological study,
> > including the ATB survivor data, are free from
> > bias/nuisance variables/confounders. Thus,
> > adhering to your advice would bereave us of
> > essentially the whole human data base, of which
> > NSYW study represents a not insubstantial fraction
> > which I would not ignore without more solid reason
> > than just "may have been biased" which is true for
> > all others, too.
> > Kind regards
> > Dr. Rainer Facius
> > German Aerospace Center
> > Institute of Aerospace Medicine
> > Linder Hoehe
> > 51147 Koeln
> > GERMANY
> > Voice: +49 2203 601 3147 or 3150
> > FAX: +49 2203 61970
> > -----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
> > Von: John Jacobus [mailto:crispy_bird at yahoo.com]
> > Gesendet: Freitag, 7. Juli 2006 17:24
> > An: Facius, Rainer; rjgunter at chpconsultants.com;
> > radsafe at radlab.nl
> > Betreff: Re: AW: AW: AW: [ RadSafe ] Cameron's
> > refutation of "Alara Does Work" - Preemployment
> > physicals
> > Rainer,
> > If you accept that the data may have been biased,
> > why do you not just move on to more relevant
> > studies?
> > Science is not based on only one study. It is a
> > body of work that establishes proof.
> > --- Rainer.Facius at dlr.de wrote:
> > >
> e to the x, dy dx, e to the x, dx
> Tangent, Secant, Cosine, Sine
> Square Root, Cuberoot, udv
> Slipstick, slideroot
> Cheerleaders chant from my old undergraduate
> -- John
> John Jacobus, MS
> Certified Health Physicist
> e-mail: crispy_bird at yahoo.com
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