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Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2007;64:553-559

Leukaemia, brain tumours and exposure to extremely low frequency magnetic fields: cohort study of Swiss railway employees

Sábado 28 de julio de 2007 · 1578 lecturas

Leukaemia, brain tumours and exposure to extremely low frequency magnetic fields: cohort study of Swiss railway employees
Martin Röösli1, Manfred Lörtscher2, Matthias Egger1, Dominik Pfluger3, Nadja Schreier1, Emanuel Lörtscher4, Peter Locher5, Adrian Spoerri1 and Christoph Minder1
1 Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, University of Berne, Switzerland
2 Federal Office of Transport, Berne, Switzerland
3 Datametrix AG, Zürich, Switzerland
4 LOITS, Bonstetten, Switzerland
5 ENOTRAC AG, Thun, Switzerland

Correspondence to:
Dr M Röösli
Institut für Sozial- und Präventivmedizin, Finkenhubelweg 11, CH-3012 Bern, Switzerland; Roeoesli ispm.unibe.ch

Aims: To investigate the relationship between extremely low frequency magnetic field (ELF-MF) exposure and mortality from leukaemia and brain tumour in a cohort of Swiss railway workers.

Methods: 20 141 Swiss railway employees with 464 129 person-years of follow-up between 1972 and 2002 were studied. Mortality rates for leukaemia and brain tumour of highly exposed train drivers (21 T average annual exposure) were compared with medium and low exposed occupational groups (i.e. station masters with an average exposure of 1 T). In addition, individual cumulative exposure was calculated from on-site measurements and modelling of past exposures.

Results: The hazard ratio (HR) for leukaemia mortality of train drivers was 1.43 (95% CI 0.74 to 2.77) compared with station masters. For myeloid leukaemia the HR of train drivers was 4.74 (95% CI 1.04 to 21.60) and for Hodgkin’s disease 3.29 (95% CI 0.69 to 15.63). Lymphoid leukaemia, non-Hodgkin’s disease and brain tumour mortality were not associated with magnetic field exposure. Concordant results were obtained from analyses based on individual cumulative exposure.

Conclusions: Some evidence of an exposure-response association was found for myeloid leukaemia and Hodgkin’s disease, but not for other haematopoietic and lymphatic malignancies and brain tumours.

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