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Further follow-up study of workers from an asbestos cement factory.
  1. H F Thomas,
  2. I T Benjamin,
  3. P C Elwood,
  4. P M Sweetnam


    A further follow-up traced 1970 workers employed at an asbestos cement factory for at least six months between 1936 and 1977. At the beginning of this period some crocidolite was used in the factory but by the end of 1936 chrysotile had become the only type of asbestos in use. Only 378 women were employed during the period concerned, and of the 30 who had died, none had a cause of death that is generally associated with exposure to asbestos. The mortality experience of the men was examined separately for all workers, all workers alive after 15 or more years after first exposure, and a smaller group of workers who were employed in 1935-6 and may have been exposed to crocidolite. In none of the three groups was there an appreciably raised standardised mortality ratio (SMR) for the causes of death investigated. These were: all causes, all neoplasms, cancers of the lung and pleura, and cancers of the gastrointestinal tract. An excess of lung cancers noted in the first follow-up study in 1964 was not found in this study. Two pleural mesotheliomas were identified but in both cases the men had worked at the factory before 1936 and therefore had been exposed to crocidolite. No cancers of the larynx were found.

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