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Title: Cancer risk estimation in Belarussian children due to thyroid irradiation as a consequence of the Chernobyl nuclear accident

Abstract

The thyroid doses received by the juvenile population of Belarus following the Chernobyl accident ranged up to about 10 Gy. The thyroid cancer risk estimate recommended in NCRP Report No. 80 was used to predict the number of thyroid cancer cases among children during 1990-1992 in selected Belarussian regions and cities. The results obtained using this risk estimate show an excess of thyroid cancer cases being registered vs. the predicted cases. Thyroid cancer incidence rate among boys under investigation is higher than among girls in the postaccident period. The excess of the observed over the expected incidence in the general juvenile population is caused by the high thyroid cancer incidence rate among boys. These results, which can be considered part of the first stage of a thorough thyroid cancer risk estimation after the Chernobyl accident, demonstrate the critical need to complete these studies in depth. 6 refs., 5 figs., 3 tabs.

Authors:
; ;  [1]
  1. Research Inst. of Radiation Medicine, Minsk (Belarus)
Publication Date:
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
381127
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Health Physics; Journal Volume: 71; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: PBD: Jul 1996
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
56 BIOLOGY AND MEDICINE, APPLIED STUDIES; THYROID; RADIATION DOSES; NEOPLASMS; RISK ASSESSMENT; BELARUS; CHILDREN; RADIATION ACCIDENTS; IODINE 131

Citation Formats

Buglova, E., Kenigsberg, J.E., and Sergeeva, N.V. Cancer risk estimation in Belarussian children due to thyroid irradiation as a consequence of the Chernobyl nuclear accident. United States: N. p., 1996. Web. doi:10.1097/00004032-199607000-00007.
Buglova, E., Kenigsberg, J.E., & Sergeeva, N.V. Cancer risk estimation in Belarussian children due to thyroid irradiation as a consequence of the Chernobyl nuclear accident. United States. doi:10.1097/00004032-199607000-00007.
Buglova, E., Kenigsberg, J.E., and Sergeeva, N.V. 1996. "Cancer risk estimation in Belarussian children due to thyroid irradiation as a consequence of the Chernobyl nuclear accident". United States. doi:10.1097/00004032-199607000-00007.
@article{osti_381127,
title = {Cancer risk estimation in Belarussian children due to thyroid irradiation as a consequence of the Chernobyl nuclear accident},
author = {Buglova, E. and Kenigsberg, J.E. and Sergeeva, N.V.},
abstractNote = {The thyroid doses received by the juvenile population of Belarus following the Chernobyl accident ranged up to about 10 Gy. The thyroid cancer risk estimate recommended in NCRP Report No. 80 was used to predict the number of thyroid cancer cases among children during 1990-1992 in selected Belarussian regions and cities. The results obtained using this risk estimate show an excess of thyroid cancer cases being registered vs. the predicted cases. Thyroid cancer incidence rate among boys under investigation is higher than among girls in the postaccident period. The excess of the observed over the expected incidence in the general juvenile population is caused by the high thyroid cancer incidence rate among boys. These results, which can be considered part of the first stage of a thorough thyroid cancer risk estimation after the Chernobyl accident, demonstrate the critical need to complete these studies in depth. 6 refs., 5 figs., 3 tabs.},
doi = {10.1097/00004032-199607000-00007},
journal = {Health Physics},
number = 1,
volume = 71,
place = {United States},
year = 1996,
month = 7
}
  • From 3 May to 4 August 1986, thyroids of 416 postmortem subjects in Bratislava (population: approximately 400,000) were measured for {sup 131}I. Subsequently, dose rates in this organ for the day of exitus were calculated. Mean dose commitments were estimated by integrating linear or quadratic-periodic regression lines drawn through scatterplots of logarithmically transformed daily dose rates. The mean dose-commitment estimates in thyroids of adults were 0.74 and 0.58 mGy for linear and quadratic-periodic regression, respectively. The same for thyroids obtained from donors of fetal to 18 y of age were 1.67 and 1.77 mGy for liner and quadratic-periodic regression, respectively.more » A comparison of the actual thyroid radiation burden with its theoretical values calculated in the first days of contamination of the environment showed that the models used were safe enough to protect the population. Estimates of absolute risk for thyroid cancer showed that excess incidence that could be expected as a result of the Chernobyl accident shall remain obscured by the spontaneous incidence of this disease at geographic localization.« less
  • The accident at the Chernobyl power station nearly 10 years ago was unprecedented in the exposure of a very large population to high levels of fallout including high levels of isotopes of iodine, predominantly {sup 131}I. An increase in incidence of childhood thyroid cancer was first observed in 1990 in Belarus and in the Ukraine, and the first reports in the Western literature were published in 1992. At a symposium in Nagasaki in June 1994, the numbers of cases that had occurred between 1990 and 1993 in Belarus, a country with a population of just over 10 million, was reportedmore » to be 233, and in the heavily contaminated northern parts of the Ukraine, with a population of about 7 million, 36 cases occurred in the same period. To put these figures into perspective, the number of childhood thyroid cancers registered in England and Wales over a 30-year period was 154, an average of 5 cases per yr in a population of 50 million people, with about 10 million children under 15 yr of age. The initial reports of such a great increase in childhood thyroid cancers in the areas exposed to fallout from Chernobyl were at first greeted in the West with some skepticism. The latent period between exposure and development of thyroid cancer was surprisingly short, based on experience with thyroid carcinomas developing after external radiation to the neck. The reliability of the figures based on the pathological diagnosis was questioned because the cases had not been confirmed by Western pathologists, and because the known high frequency of papillary microcarcinoms in adults raised the possibility that the reported incidence was resulted form increased ascertainment and not a true increase in incidence. 14 refs.« less
  • The object of the research was to establish a relationship between the density of soil contamination by {sup 137}Cs in populated localities as a result of the accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant and to predict the risk of malignant tumors for the population.
  • Immediately after the first information about the accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant was received, three groups of experts were formed at the I.V. Kurchatov Institute of Atomic Energy. The purpose of these groups was to analyze the accident. Later they were given official status by a special decree of the President of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. The group of which the authors of the present report as well as O. Ya. Shakh were members was charged with estimating the activity, composition, and dynamics of the emission of radioactive substances from the damaged power-generating unit onmore » the basis of computational, experimental, and field data. All estimates presented below were obtained in May-June 1986. An objective estimate of the parameters of the emission of fission products and fuel from the damaged reactor can be made only if the following parameters are known: activity of radionuclides accumulated in the core; character and dynamics of accident development; state of the fuel and reactor as a whole; and, region (zone) of propagation and composition of the radioactive fallout. The situation was especially difficult because there was very little initial information. Only computational data on the activity of the radionuclides accumulated in the RBMK reactor during normal operation were available. The primary information received about the real radiation conditions and the composition of the samples was sporadic and random. This, together with the lack of practical experience in estimating the consequences of serious radiation accidents, made it impossible to formulate unequivocal conclusions and often resulted in divergent points of view. For this reason, the working documents on the assessment of the emission contained some contradictions. Ultimately, the collective work of the experts and fruitful discussions led to the development of a base estimate of the composition, activity, and dynamics of emission.« less
  • The reported relationship of radiation exposure and thyroid carcinoma stimulated this retrospective study of 298 patients treated at St. Jude Children's Hospital with radiation therapy to the neck for childhood cancer to identify patients who developed subsequent thyroid abnormalities. This series includes 153 patients with Hodgkin's disease, 95 with acute lymphocytic leukemia, 28 with lymphoepithelioma, and 22 with miscellaneous tumors. Inclusion in the study required 5 years of disease-free survival following therapy for their original tumor, which included thyroid irradiation. Follow-up has been 100%. Most patients also received chemotherapy. Seventeen patients were found to have decreased thyroid reserve with normalmore » levels of free triiodothyroxine (T3) or free thyroxin, (T4) and an elevated level of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). In nine patients hypothyroidism developed, with decreased T3 or T4 levels and an elevated level of TSH. One hyperthyroid patient was identified. Two patients had thyroiditis, and seven had thyroid neoplasms: (carcinoma in two, adenoma in two, colloid nodule in one, and undiagnosed nodules in two). This survey has demonstrated an increased incidence of thyroid dysfunction and thyroid neoplasia when compared to the general population. The importance of long-term follow-up for thyroid disease is emphasized in patients who have received thyroid irradiation. The possible role of subclinical hypothyroidism with TSH elevation coupled with radiation damage to the thyroid gland as a model for the development of neoplastic disease is discussed.« less