Excerpted from Hayley Halpin, in TheJournal.ie
Nukewatch Quarterly Winter 2018-19
Over 180 teenagers and children have been found to have thyroid cancer or suspected cancer following the Fukushima nuclear accident, new research has found.
… As of November, the total of dead or missing from the earthquake and the tsunami stood at 18,434 people, according to the National Police Agency. In addition, more than 3,600 people—most of them from Fukushima—died from causes such as illness and suicide linked to the aftermath of the tragedy, government data shows.
The accident at the nuclear power station in 2011 has also raised grave concerns about radioactive material released into the environment, including concerns over radiation-induced thyroid cancer.
Ultrasound screenings for thyroid cancer were subsequently conducted at the Fukushima Health Management Survey.
The observational study group included about 324,000 people aged 18 or younger at the time of the accident. It reports on two rounds of ultrasound screening during the first five years after the accident. Thyroid cancer or suspected cancer was identified in 187 individuals within five years—116 people in the first round among nearly 300,000 people screened and 71 in the second round among 271,000 screened. The overwhelming common diagnosis in surgical cases was papillary thyroid cancer—149 of 152 cases.
Pediatrician and renowned author Dr. Helen Caldicott reported to Nukewatch in a Dec. 6, 2018 email that, “The normal incidence of thyroid cancer among young people is one or two cases in a million, I looked it up.”
—TheJournal.ie (an Irish news website and member of the Press Council of Ireland), Dec. 5, 2018. With reporting by Agence France Presse.