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Cancers related to exposure to arsenic at a copper smelter.
  1. P E Enterline,
  2. R Day,
  3. G M Marsh
  1. Department of Biostatistics, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh, PA 15261, USA.


    OBJECTIVE--This is an update of an earlier study on the relation between exposure to arsenic in air and deaths from respiratory cancer. The purpose was to verify earlier findings of a supralinear dose response relation and to examine relations with other cancers, particularly those reported in studies on drinking water. METHODS--An earlier study of 2802 men who worked at a copper smelter for a year or more during the period 1940-64 and who were followed up for deaths during the period 1941-76 was updated until 1986. Estimates of exposure for the period 1977-1984 were added. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS--The additional follow up confirms the earlier finding that at low doses the increments in death rates for respiratory cancer for a given increment in dose are greater than at high doses. The additional follow up also shows significant increases in cancer of the large intestine and bone, and SMRs > 150 for cancer of the buccal cavity and pharynx, rectal cancer, and kidney cancer. There was a positive relation between exposure to arsenic in air and kidney and bone cancer, but none for the other cancers, except respiratory.

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