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J Radiat Res. 2000 Jun;41(2):81-92.

Residential randon exposure and lung cancer risk in Misasa, Japan: a case-control study.

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Cancer Information and Epidemiology Division, National Cancer Center Research Institute, Tokyo, Japan.


In order to investigate an association between residential radon exposure and risk of lung cancer, a case-control study was conducted in Misasa Town, Tottori Prefecture, Japan. The case series consisted of 28 people who had died of lung cancer in the years 1976-96 and 36 controls chosen randomly from the residents in 1976, matched by sex and year of birth. Individual residential radon concentrations were measured for 1 year with alpha track detectors. The average radon concentration was 46 Bq/m3 for cases and 51 Bq/m3 for controls. Compared to the level of 24 or less Bq/m3, the adjusted odds ratios of lung cancer associated with radon levels of 25-49, 50-99 and 100 or more Bq/m3, were 1.13 (95% confidence interval; 0.29-4.40), 1.23 (0.16-9.39) and 0.25 (0.03-2.33), respectively. None of the estimates showed statistical significance, due to small sample size. When the subjects were limited to only include residents of more than 30 years, the estimates did not change substantially. This study did not find that the risk pattern of lung cancer, possibly associated with residential radon exposure, in Misasa Town differed from patterns observed in other countries.

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