Cancer Risks from Exposure to Radon Progeny in Mines and Dwellings

  • O. Axelson
Part of the Recent Results in Cancer Research book series (RECENTCANCER, volume 120)


Since the late 1970s, radon in the human environment has become a major health interest with regard to risk of cancer. Radon is an inert gas emanating from the ground and stony building materials, and increased concentrations typically occur in underground mines but quite often also in buildings. This element, more precisely radon-222, originates from the decay of uranium through radium, and the further decay of radon leads to a series of radioactive isotopes of polonium, bismuth, and lead. The first four of these isotopes are referred to as short-lived radon progeny (or radon daughters) and have half-lives from less than a millisecond up to almost 27 min. There is also a decay chain from thorium through radon-220, or thoron, but the elements in this series are usually of less hygienic concern.


Lung Cancer Lung Cancer Risk Uranium Miner Indoor Radon Work Level 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin·Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • O. Axelson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Occupational MedicineUniversity HospitalLinköpingSweden

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