Invited commentary: are low radiation doses or occupational exposures really risk factors for malignant melanoma?
Am J Epidemiol 1997 Mar, 145(6):532-535
Concerns about a possible association between melanoma and employment in the nuclear industry first surfaced in the early 1980s (1), and even earlier with regard to employment in other industries (2), Although occupationally related skin disorders were first observed in the 1700s (3), and although radiation-induced skin erythemas and skin cancers were observed among early radiation workers as well as among populations undergoing radiation therapy (4, 5), observations regarding the possible association between occupational exposures and melanoma have tended to receive little credence (6). In 1981. Austin et al. (1) reported results from a retrospective cohort study including a fourfold increase in the incidence of melanoma., among workers at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) in Livermore, California. These findings generated concern that other nuclear workers might be similarly subject to increased risK of melanoma, perhaps due to job-related exposures to low doses of ionizing radiation. Studies carried out at a sister laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) (7, 8). indicated that increased melanoma incidence did not exist among LANL workers as a whole (7), and further that only increasing education level was clearly associated with the occurrence of incident melanoma within this cohort (8).
Radiation; Radiation-exposure; Occupational-exposure; Risk-factors; Malignancy; Occupational-diseases; Skin-disorders; Skin-cancer; Skin-exposure; Demographic-characteristics; Workers
Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, University of Texas Medical Branch, 700 Strand, 1134 Ewing Hall, Galveston, TX 77555
American Journal of Epidemiology
Department of Social and Preventive Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, State University, Buffalo, New York