Mortality and cancer incidence among laboratory technicians in medical research and routine laboratories (Sweden)
- 134 Downloads
Objectives: To investigate cancer incidence and mortality among laboratory employees.
Methods: Mortality and cancer incidence were investigated among 2553 female and male laboratory workers employed at the Karolinska Institute and Karolinska Hospital in Stockholm between 1950 and 1989. Mortality was followed from 1952–1993 and cancer incidence from 1958–1992. Expected numbers were based on the general population in Stockholm, standardizing for age, gender, and calendar period.
Results: The overall mortality and cancer incidence in the cohort was lower than expected. There were in all 10 cases of hemato-lymphatic malignancies (three acute myeloid leukemias, four non-Hodgkin lymphomas, two Hodgkin's lymphomas, and one multiple myeloma) in the cohort. The standardized incidence ratio (SIR) for hemato-lymphatic tumors was increased among workers who had ever been employed in laboratories with a high probability for chemical exposure, SIR 224 (95% CI 108–412). The risk of breast cancer among women was increased after more than 10 years of work in high- exposure laboratories, SIR 225 (128–365). The number of malignant melanomas exceeded those expected.
Conclusions: The findings support earlier observations of an increased risk of hematolymphatic cancer among laboratory workers. The routine for handling chemicals and functionality of ventilatory equipment must be under continuous supervision.
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Dement JM, Cromer JR (1992) Cancer and reproductive risks among chemists and laboratory workers: a review. Appl Occupat Environ Hyg 7: 120-126.Google Scholar
- 2.Harrington JM, Shannon HS (1977) Survey of safety and health care in British medical laboratories. Br Med J 1: 626-628.Google Scholar
- 3.Li FP (1969) Cancer mortality among chemists. J Natl Cancer Inst 43: 1159-1164.Google Scholar
- 4.Olin GR, Ahlbom A (1980) The cancer mortality among Swedish chemists graduated during three decades: A comparison with the general population and with a cohort of architects. Environ Res 22: 154-161.Google Scholar
- 5.Walrath J, Li FP, Hoar SK, Mead MW, Fraumeni Jr JF (1985) Causes of death among female chemists. Am J Public Health 75: 883-885.Google Scholar
- 6.Carpenter L, Beral V, Roman E, Swerdlow AJ, Davies G (1991) Cancer in laboratory workers. Lancet 338: 1080-1081.Google Scholar
- 7.Hunter WJ, Henman BA, Barlett DM, Le Geyt IP (1993) Mortality of professional chemists in England and Wales, 1965–1989. Am J Ind Med 23: 615-627.Google Scholar
- 8.Dosemeci M, Alavanja M, Vetter R, Eaton B, Blair A (1992) Mortality among laboratory workers employed at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Epidemiology 3: 258-262.Google Scholar
- 9.Daly L, Herity B, Bourke GJ (1994) An investigation of brain tumours and other malignancies in an agricultural research institute. Occup Environ Med 51: 295-298.Google Scholar
- 10.Cordier S, Mousel M-L, Le Goaster C, et al. (1995) Cancer risk among workers in biomedical research. Scand J Work Environ Health 21: 450-459.Google Scholar
- 11.Brown TP, Paulson J, Pannett B, et al. (1996) Mortality pattern among biological research laboratory workers. Br J Cancer 73: 1152-1155.Google Scholar
- 12.Breslow NE, Day NE (1987) Statistical Methods in Cancer Research. Vol II. — The Analysis of Cohort Studies. IARC Scientific Publications No 82. Lyon: International Agency for Research on Cancer.Google Scholar
- 13.Marsh GM, Ehland J, Paik M, Preininger M, Caplan R (1986) OCMAP/PC: A user-oriented occupational cohort mortality analysis program. Am Statistician 40: 308-309.Google Scholar
- 14.Wennborg H, Yuen J, Axelsson G, Nise G, Sasco A, Ahlbom A, Gustavsson P (1998) Mortality and cancer incidence in Swedish female biomedical laboratory personnel (abstract). International Conference on Women's Health: Occupation, Cancer & Reproduction — New Perspectives in Occupational Epidemiology. 14–16.5, Reykjavik (Iceland).Google Scholar
- 15.Sasco AJ (1992) Cancer risk in laboratory workers [letter]. Lancet 339: 684.Google Scholar
- 16.Linet MS, Cartwright RA (1996) The leukemias. In: Schottenfeld D, Fraumeni JH, eds. Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention, 2nd edn. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- 17.Mattsson B (1984) Cancer registration in Sweden. Thesis. Stockholm: Karolinska Institute.Google Scholar
- 18.Center for Epidemiology (1993) Cancer incidence in Sweden 1993. Stockholm: Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare.Google Scholar
- 19.IARC (1987) IARC monographs on the evaluation of carcinogenic risks to humans. Overall Evaluations of Carciongenicity: An Updating of IARC Monographs 1-42. Suppl 7. Lyon: International Agency for Research on Cancer.Google Scholar
- 20.IARC (1995) IARC Monographs on the evaluation of carcinogenic risks to humans. Dry Cleaning, Some Chlorinated Solvents and Other Industrial Chemicals. Vol 63. Lyon: International Agency for Research on Cancer.Google Scholar
- 21.Östlin P (1989) Occupational career and health — Methodological considerations on the healthy worker effect. Thesis, Uppsala: Uppsala University.Google Scholar
- 22.Hoar SK, Pell S (1981) A retrospective cohort study of mortality and cancer incidence among chemists. J Occup Med 23: 485-494.Google Scholar
- 23.Vagero D, Swerdlow AJ, Beral V (1990) Occupation and malignant melanoma: a study based on cancer registration data in England and Wales and in Sweden. Br J Ind Med 47: 317-324.Google Scholar
- 24.Austin DF, Reynolds P (1997) Investigation of an excess of melanoma among employees of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Am J Epidemiol 145: 524-531.Google Scholar
- 25.Moore DH, Patterson HW, Hatch F, Discher D, Schneider JS, Bennett D, Mendelsohn ML (1997) Case-control study of malignant melanoma among employees of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Am J Ind Med 32: 377-391.Google Scholar
- 26.Belli S, Comba P, De Santis M, Grignoli M, Sasco AJ (1992) Mortality study of workers employed by the Italian National Institute of Health, 1960–1989. Scand J Work Environ Health 18: 64-67.Google Scholar
- 27.Goldberg MS, Labreche F (1996) Occupational risk factors for female breast cancer: A review. Occup Environ Med 53: 145-156.Google Scholar