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Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in workers dismantling nuclear facilities in Germany

08-04-2020 02:05 PM CET | Health & Medicine

Press release from: Sachverständiger Strahlenschutz Roland Wolff (DGuSV)

Diplom-Physiker Roland Wolff, Medical Physicist

Diplom-Physiker Roland Wolff, Medical Physicist

Bremen. In a German group of workers dismantling nuclear facilities three incident cases of Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (NHL) occurred at ages 46-52 years . The case report was published in the Zentralblatt für Arbeitsmedizin (occupational medicine) in the current edition of July 2020. The male workers developed the B-cell lymphoma after participating in the demolition of facilities, one of them producing nuclear fuel rods containing plutonium and uranium. Both, the ocupational exposure and the young age at diagnosis speak against a spontaneous or even random occurrence in the small circumscript group with longlasting exposures. Incorporated uranium was detected in two cases, incorporated plutonium in one case. In general, the bone marrow is considered as risk organ in lymphomas, but NHL primarily originate from peripheral lymphocytes. The literature review confirms that uranium and plutonium compounds accumulate in the peripheral lymph nodes.
This locally short-range alpha radiation leads to particularly high doses. The authors, therefore, conclude that without the consideration of plutonium the usual metabolic model with bone marrow as an exclusive target organ is inadequate underestimating the more likely occupational radiation doses. The dose based on official personal dosimetry can therefore only be a lower limit for occupational radiation exposure in the three cases. Any incorporated radionuclides from dust exposure occuring by demolition of nuclear facilities should thus be considered adequately in recognizing occupational disease causation.

Frentzel-Beyme, R., Schmitz-Feuerhake, I. & Wolff, R. Non-Hodgkin-Lymphome bei strahlenexponierten Arbeitnehmern. Zbl Arbeitsmed (2020).
Volume 70, Issue 4, July 2020
ISSN: 0944-2502 (Print) 2198-0713 (Online)
https://link.springer.com/journal/40664/70/4

Additional Link: RAD2018 conference paper
https://www.rad-proceedings.org/paper.php?id=196

Bremen, 03.08.2020

Sachverständiger Strahlenschutz Roland Wolff (DGuSV)
Dipl.-Phys. Roland Wolff
Lausanner Strasse 47
D-28325 Bremen
Germany
Tel: +49 421 98500688
rwradiation@online.de

https://sachverstaendiger-strahlenschutz-roland-wolff.dgusv.de/

Dipl.-Physicist Roland Wolff is a recognized and certified expert for radiation protection, medical physics and radiation physics of the German Association of Professional Experts (DGuSV). Mr. Wolff has completed a degree in physics and medical physics and holds a specialist in radiation protection for medical physics experts.

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