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General Health : Environment Last Updated: Apr 20, 2011 - 9:38:09 AM

Organic solvents raise risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in women
By sue Mueller
Feb 23, 2009 - 10:34:11 PM

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Feb 23, 2009 ( -- A new study in the Jan 15, 2009 issue of the American Journal of Epidemiology suggests that women exposed to organic solvents on the job are at higher risk of non-Hodgkin Lymphoma.


NHL is a term for a number of immune-system malignancies which hit 66,120 people and killed 19,160 in 2008, according to the National Cancer Institute.  


The incidence of the disease has been on the rise at a rate of 3 to 4 percent per year since 1970s, Dr. Tongzhang Zheng of the Yale School of Public Health in New Haven, Connecticut and colleagues note in their study report.


For the study, the researchers compared 601 women diagnosed with NHL with 717 controls without the disease for their exposure to organic solvents.


They found occupational exposure to chlorinated solvents increased risk of developing NHL risk by 40 percent compared to a 30 percent increase by exposure to formaldehyde and 100 percent by tetrachloride exposure.   Benzene exposure also raised NHL risk.


High exposure to organic solvents led to high risk of NHL, according to the study.

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