9/11 firefighters have an increased risk of developing cancer, especially multiple myeloma

I have read that firefighters in general are three times more likely to get cancer because of their exposure to toxic chemicals that they inhale and that also get stuck in their clothing. But it really saddened me last week to read a recently published report about the 9/11 firefighters…

In this NBC News article, multiple myeloma is the first cancer mentioned: goo.gl/XaZJsa

The fact that so many of these brave people were being diagnosed with MGUS and MM is actually not the news of the day. I’ve been reading articles about this for years now. But, as I wrote above, there is a new study, published last week in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA Oncology: ) that officially confirms this terrible trend.

And I quote…The JAMA “study shows that WTC exposure may be a risk factor for the development of multiple myeloma and its precursor disease.”

Here’s the link to the actual (full) study: goo.gl/BcyEqn

My best wishes to them and their families.

1 Comment

  1. I’m a little skeptical of causation. They’re heavily monitoring the firefighters for disease. Something most people don’t get. As an example, my current doctor doesn’t include globulins as part of annual physical blood tests. It was globulins being out of spec that first led to my MGUS diagnosis. So I suspect many people might have MGUS and don’t know it.

    Also, it was less than 10% different than the regular NYC population.

    So with there being a less than 10% difference and many people not being screened for MGUS in their annual physicals, I’m not convinced of causation.

    As a side note, I can’t understand why many doctors here don’t include globulins in the blood test. It’s a derived number being equal to the Total Protein – Albumin, which are both included in the other doctor’s blood tests. So it’s not even a separate test.

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