[ RadSafe ] 1991 Australian U-mining study ?

Jaro Franta jaro_10kbq at videotron.ca
Thu Jul 28 12:00:04 CDT 2016


Is anyone here familiar with the 1991 study linked below ?
Mark Sonter in particular ?

The abstract says that "we conclude that this increase is unlikely to be due
to differences in smoking habits or other confounders".
But there is no mention of silica dust or particulates from diesel engine
exhaust, both of which are known carcinogens in other mines.

Have there ever been any review comments on the study ?



Radon Daughter Exposures at the Radium Hill Uranium Mine and Lung Cancer
Rates among Former Workers, 1952-87
Alistair Woodward, David Roder, Anthony J. McMichael, Philip Crouch and Arul
Cancer Causes & Control
Vol. 2, No. 4 (Jul., 1991), pp. 213-220
Published by: Springer

The aim of this historical (retrospective) cohort study was to investigate
the relation between occupational exposure to radon daughters and subsequent
mortality from lung cancer. 
Participants were former workers from the Radium Hill uranium mine, which
operated in eastern South Australia from 1952 to 1961. 
A total of 2,574 workers were identified from mine records. 
Exposures to radon daughters were estimated from historical records of radon
gas concentrations in the mine and from individual job histories. 
Exposures of underground workers were low by comparison with other mines of
that period (mean 7.0 Working Level Months [WLM], median 3.0 WLM). 
Thirty-six percent of the cohort could not be traced beyond the end of
employment at Radium Hill. 
Among those traced to the end of 1987, lung cancer mortality was increased
relative to the Australian national population of the period (Standardized
Mortality Ratio = 194, 95 percent confidence interval [CI] = 142-245). 
Compared with surface workers, lung cancer mortality was markedly increased
in the underground workers with radon daughter exposures > 40 WLM (relative
risk = 5.2, CI = 1.8-15.1). 
>From the available information, we conclude that this increase is unlikely
to be due to differences in smoking habits or other confounders. 
Taken together with the findings from other occupational studies, these
results support current moves towards more stringent radiation control in
the workplace, and underline the importance of research into the possible
effects of domestic radon exposures.


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