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      Multicentric study on malignant pleural mesothelioma and non-occupational exposure to asbestos


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          Insufficient evidence exists on the risk of pleural mesothelioma from non-occupational exposure to asbestos. A population-based case–control study was carried out in six areas from Italy, Spain and Switzerland. Information was collected for 215 new histologically confirmed cases and 448 controls. A panel of industrial hygienists assessed asbestos exposure separately for occupational, domestic and environmental sources. Classification of domestic and environmental exposure was based on a complete residential history, presence and use of asbestos at home, asbestos industrial activities in the surrounding area, and their distance from the dwelling. In 53 cases and 232 controls without evidence of occupational exposure to asbestos, moderate or high probability of domestic exposure was associated with an increased risk adjusted by age and sex: odds ratio (OR) 4.81, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.8–13.1. This corresponds to three situations: cleaning asbestos-contaminated clothes, handling asbestos material and presence of asbestos material susceptible to damage. The estimated OR for high probability of environmental exposure (living within 2000 m of asbestos mines, asbestos cement plants, asbestos textiles, shipyards, or brakes factories) was 11.5 (95% CI 3.5–38.2). Living between 2000 and 5000 m from asbestos industries or within 500 m of industries using asbestos could also be associated with an increased risk. A dose–response pattern appeared with intensity of both sources of exposure. It is suggested that low-dose exposure to asbestos at home or in the general environment carries a measurable risk of malignant pleural mesothelioma. © 2000 Cancer Research Campaign

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          Author and article information

          Br J Cancer
          British Journal of Cancer
          Nature Publishing Group
          02 June 2000
          July 2000
          : 83
          : 1
          : 104-111
          [1 ]Cancer Epidemiology Unit, S Giovanni B Hospital and Regional Centre for Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention, Torino, Italy
          [2 ]Department of Epidemiology and Cancer Registration, Catalan Institute of Oncology (ICO), Av. Gran Via s/n, L'Hospitalet de Llobregat, Km 2.7, E-08907, Spain
          [3 ]Department of Pathology, Ospedale Martini, Torino, Italy
          [4 ]Centre de Seguretat i Condicions de Salut en el Treball (CSCST), Barcelona, Spain
          [5 ]Epidemiology Unit, Center for Study and Prevention of Cancer Firenze (CSPO), AO Careggi, Firenze, Italy
          [6 ]Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, Hospital Universitario Puerta del Mar, Cádiz, Spain
          [7 ]Agency for Environmental Protection (ARPA) Piemonte, Torino, Italy
          [8 ]Department of Pathology, Hospital Clinic, Barcelona, Spain
          [9 ]Former Documentation Services, Instituto Nacional de Seguridad e Higiene en el Trabajo and Centro de Investigación y Desarrollo de Barcelona (CSIC), Barcelona, Spain
          [10 ]Geneva Medical Inspectorate of Factories (OCIRT) and Geneva Cancer Registry, Geneva, Switzerland
          Copyright 2000, Cancer Research Campaign
          : 26 October 1999
          : 21 January 2000
          : 17 February 2000
          Regular Article

          Oncology & Radiotherapy
          case–control studies,asbestos,mesothelioma,environmental exposure
          Oncology & Radiotherapy
          case–control studies, asbestos, mesothelioma, environmental exposure


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