Cancer mortality in a cohort of asbestos textile workers

E. Pira, C. Pelucchi, L. Buffoni, A. Palmas, M. Turbiglio, E. Negri, P. G. Piolatto, C. La Vecchia

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A cohort of 889 men and 1077 women employed for at least 1 month between 1946 and 1984 by a former Italian leading asbestos (mainly textile) company, characterised by extremely heavy exposures often for short durations, was followed up to 1996, for a total of 53024 person-years of observation. Employment data were obtained from factory personnel records, while vital status and causes of death were ascertained through municipality registers and local health units. We observed 222 cancer deaths compared with 116.4 expected (standardized mortality ratio, SMR = 191). The highest ratios were found for pleural (SMR = 4105), peritoneal (SMR = 1817) and lung (SMR = 282) cancers. We observed direct relationships with duration of employment for lung and peritoneal cancer, and with time since first employment for lung cancer and mesothelioma. Pleural cancer risk was independent from duration (SMR = 3428 for employment

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)580-586
Number of pages7
JournalBritish Journal of Cancer
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Feb 14 2005


  • Asbestos
  • Cancer mortality
  • Cohort study
  • Lung cancer
  • Mesothelioma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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