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Cancer Risks Due to Occupational Exposure to Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons: A Preliminary Report

  • D. Krewski
  • J. Siemiatycki
  • L. Nadon
  • R. Dewar
  • M. Gérin
Part of the Environmental Science Research book series (ESRH, volume 39)

Abstract

A case-control study was undertaken in Montreal to investigate the possible associations between occupational exposures and cancers of the following sites: esophagus, stomach, colorectum, liver, pancreas, lung, prostate, bladder, kidney, melanoma, and lymphoid tissue. In total, 3,726 cancer patients were interviewed to obtain detailed lifetime job histories, which were translated into a history of occupational exposures. This article provides a preliminary report on the risk of 19 different types of cancer in relation to occupational exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Consideration is given to PAHs derived from coal, petroleum, wood, and other sources as well as all sources combined. Benzo(a)pyrene, the single most potent PAH, was used to form a sixth exposure variable. Separate statistical analyses were carried out for each category of PAH and for each type of cancer using control series drawn from among the other cancer sites in the study. Over three-quarters of
Tab. 1

Number of cases and controls for each case series

Cancer Case Series (ICD code)

Cancer Sites Excluded from Control Seriesa

No. of cases

No. of controls

Esophagus (150)

Lung, stomach

107

2,514

Stomach (151)

Lung, esophagus

250

2,514

Colorectum (153,154)

Lung

787

1,081

-Colon (153, except 153.3)

Lung other colorectal

364

2,081

-Rectosigmoid (153.3,154.0)

Lung other colorectal

233

2,081

-Rectum (154, except 154.0)

Lung other colorectal

190

1,315

Liver (155)

Lung

50

2,806

Pancreas (157)

Lung

117

2,741

Lung (162)

 

857

1,523

-Oat cell

Other lung

159

1,523

-Squamous cell

Other lung

359

1,523

-Adenocarcinoma

Other lung

162

1,523

-Other cell typesb

Other lung

177

1,523

Prostate (185)

Lung

452

1,733

Bladder (188)

Lung, kidney

486

2,196

Kidney (189)

Lung, bladder

181

2,196

Melanoma of the skin (172)

Lung

121

2,737

Hodgkin’s lymphoma (201)

Lung, other lymphoma

53

2,599

Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (200,202)

Lung, Hodgkin’s

206

2,599

a For each case series, all cancer patients interviewed served as referents with the exceptions listed in this column. Furthermore, for rectum, lung and prostate, only those subjects interviewed during the same ascertainment periods as the three respective site series were used as referents.

b This is a heterogeneous grouping which includes large cell, spindle cell, adenosquamous and “carcinoma, not otherwise specified”.

all subjects had some occupational exposure to PAHs. At the levels of exposure experienced, the preliminary analysis reported here revealed no clear evidence of an increased risk of any type of cancer among exposed men. Further analyses are underway to allow for occupational exposure to other industrial chemicals which may act as confounders, and to evaluate any effects of intensity and duration of exposure.

Keywords

Cancer Risk Occupational Exposure Coal Gasification Carcinogenic Risk Increase Cancer Risk 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Krewski
    • 1
    • 2
  • J. Siemiatycki
    • 3
    • 4
  • L. Nadon
    • 3
  • R. Dewar
    • 3
  • M. Gérin
    • 5
  1. 1.Health Protection BranchHealth & Welfare CanadaOttawaCanada
  2. 2.Department of Mathematics & StatisticsCarleton UniversityOttawaCanada
  3. 3.Epidemiology of Preventive Medicine Research CentreInstitute Armand FrappierMontrealCanada
  4. 4.Department of Epidemiology & BiostatisticsMcGill UniversityMontrealCanada
  5. 5.Department of Environmental HygieneUniversity of MontrealMontrealCanada

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