The other was in Greene and was conducted in 2001. This focused on multiple myeloma.
I know the Wellman brain cancer cluster was deemed too small to have firm scientific findings (only 10 people, I believe). But what about in Greene? Any definitive findings on what in the environment was, or wasn't causing multiple myeloma?
I remember there were concerns in the 1980's or 1990's so many students from Regis High School, especially girls were diagnosed with cancer. Dr. Lynch do you recall and what was the conclusion?
The report was sent to the person concerned and to the Iowa Department of Public Health and it was decided that no further investigation was needed.
Dr. West, Lynch and Nurse Sargent, with all the cancer you've been around and studied... do you feel there are environmental causes here in Iowa causing cancer? What should people do, aside from lifestyle adjustments, to minimize risk?
Yes, I remember the concern with Regis. To do a good investigation with that group, we needed to have personal identifiers for the students provided to us, because they did not reside in just one area. Also, some of these students had moved out of state, so we did not have information on their cancer experience. The effort to provide the personal identifiers proved to be difficult and, as I recall, were never provided to the Cancer Registry.
Certainly one of these things Iowans can do to reduce their risk of cancer is to measure their residential radon levels. Residential radon is the leading cause of lung cance in the non-smoking population in the U.S. and Iowa.
I believe that some want to blame the water or environmental factors and that is where I thought it was helpful to go to the experts that do studies and have the data to find information. That is why I contacted the State Health Registry because I felt it was essential to either disspelled concerns and at least ingestigate it there was true concerns. That is where they were extremely help, Dr. West was able to present the information and even re-did the study comparing Mt. Vernon to Lisbon. They were wonderful!!!
A quick look through my files doesn't show that we have done an investigation in Palo.
Hey Cindy from Amana- I see your comment in our holding area, I can answer that directly- just email me: Beth.Malicki@KCRG.com Thanks!
I agree with Dr. Lynch, in regards to Radon. The Iowa Cancer Consoritium is making a concerted effort to increase the awareness of residential radon and testing. January is Radon Awareness Month, I encourage everyone to get a testing kit, the Linn County Department of Health has those and the cost is only $5. That is something that has been attributed to lung cancers in non-smokers.
Actually I do have an investigation in Palo done in 2011 that did not show any elevation in cancer.
Any last questions? We're ready to wrap up soon.
Iowa pretty much has cancer rates similar to what is found in the white caucasian population in the U.S. Our most common cancers in the statewide cancer registry are lung, colorectum, prostate, and female breast cancers, just like what is reported for the U.S.
Radiation experts say you need to be exposed for at least 5 years.
Thank you Drs. Lynch and West and Nurse Sargent for being our experts in this chat. Thank you for all who submitted questions and shared in this conversation! The online version of this story has a lot of information, if you want to check out KCRG.com. I can help answer further questions : firstname.lastname@example.org