OBJECTIVE To investigate the relation between exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and the incidence of lung and bladder cancer among aluminium production workers.
METHODS The cohort comprised 1790 men employed for more than 5 years at a Norwegian aluminium plant contributing 36 587 person-years to the study. Historical exposure to PAHs was estimated by the use of industrial hygiene measurements and by a panel of three people familiar with the industry. Cancer incidence was investigated from 1953 to 1995. The observed cases of cancer among men were compared with expected numbers calculated from national rates for men, and dose-response relations were investigated by internal comparison by Poisson regression with age, period, smoking, and cumulative exposure included in the models. The effect of lagging exposure by 10, 20, and 30 years was also investigated.
RESULT The present study showed no increased risk of urinary bladder cancer or lung cancer with increasing cumulative exposure to PAHs. No significant changes in risk were found for different lag times.
CONCLUSIONS Due to the small size of this study, a minor increase in risk could not be excluded.
- cancer incidence
- polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons
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