Cancer incidence in Danish phenoxy herbicide workers, 1947-1993

Elsebeth Lynge*

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde

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    A cohort study was undertaken of 2119 workers from Denmark who were potentially exposed to phenoxy herbicides. The workers were from two factories that produced phenoxy herbicides since 1947 and 1951, respectively. They had been employed either in the manufacture of phenoxy herbicide or in the manual service functions. The main product was 4-chloro-2-methylphenoxyacetic acid (MCPA). From 1947 to 1993 the 2119 workers had a slightly lower overall cancer incidence than the Danish population (observed = 204; expected [Exp] = 234.23; standardized incidence ratio [SIR] = 0.87; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.8-1.0). Four soft-tissue sarcoma cases were observed (Exp = 2.47; SIR = 1.62; 95% CI = 0.4-4.1). All four cases occurred among men from Kemisk Vaerk Koge (Exp = 1.68; SIR = 2.38; 95% CI = 0.7-6.1). There were six cases of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (Exp = 5.07; SIR = 1.10; 95% CI = 0.4-2.6) and no significantly elevated risk of other cancers. Based on small numbers, the study suggests an association between the exposure to MCPA and related phenoxy herbicides and the risk of soft-tissue sarcoma. The study does not indicate a risk of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma after exposure to these phenoxy herbicides or a risk of other cancer diseases.

    Sider (fra-til)683-688
    Antal sider6
    TidsskriftEnvironmental Health Perspectives
    Udgave nummerSUPPL. 2
    StatusUdgivet - 1 jan. 1998


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