[ RadSafe ] Radium history question - internal contamination
sjd at swcp.com
Fri Oct 28 15:17:15 CDT 2011
More about the canceling of research on radium-exposed
persons can be found in an article by Jim Muckerheide (1995).
Muckerheide, J. The health effects of low-level radiation: Science,
data, and corrective action. Nuclear News. 38(11):26-34; September,
1995. Also see the editorial by Nancy Zacha in this issue of NN.
At 11:37 AM 10/28/2011, you wrote:
>On Oct 28, 2011, at 10:17 AM, Bjorn Cedervall wrote:
> > It is certainly clear that some people working with radium during
> the approx. years 1910-1940 became heavily contaminated with radium
> and even exhaled radon as a consequence of the radium burden (the
> dial painters are probably the best known examples, see Claudia
> Clark's Radium Girls which is great reading for anyone interested
> in that particular tragedy).
>Although I took Robley Evans graduate course at MIT, a good buddy
>was a thesis student of his. My friend was involved in measuring
>the radon exhaled by many "Radium Girls" who had not developed bone
>cancers many years before. It was curious that these women seemed
>to be living longer than the normal lifespans of unexposed
>women. The real tragedy was the canceling of government support for
>such monitoring while many of the women were still alive! A
>scientific opportunity was lost that will probably never be available again.
>After Prof. Evans suggested the dial painters stop pointing their
>radium brushes with their lips such fatal contamination ended. No
>other other remediation was made: no monitoring of the work place
>was done, no cleanup was performed, no government agency was involved!
>J. Marshall Reber, ScD
>165 Berkeley St.
>Methuen MA 01844
>Alternate Email: reber at alum.mit.edu
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