Why Cancer Rates Are Higher in Flight Attendants空姐患癌风险高，这是为何 时间:2018-07-05 单词数:6140
双语 中文 英文
Flight attendants may have a higher risk of a number of cancers, a new study finds.
Researchers found that women and men on U.S. cabin crews have higher rates of many types of cancer, compared with the general population. This includes cancers of the breast, cervix, skin, thyroid and uterus, as well as gastrointestinal system cancers, which include colon, stomach, esophageal, liver and pancreatic cancers.
One possible explanation for these increased rates is that flight attendants are exposed to a lot of known and potential carcinogens, or cancer-causing agents, within their work environment, said lead study author Irina Mordukhovich, a research associate at Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
One of those carcinogens is cosmic ionizing radiation, which is elevated at higher altitudes, Mordukhovich told Live Science. This type of radiation is particularly damaging to DNA and is a known cause of breast cancer and nonmelanoma skin cancer, she said.
Air cabin crews receive the highest yearly dose of ionizing radiation on the job of all U.S. workers, she added.
In the new study, the researchers looked at data from more than 5,300 flight attendants from different airlines who completed an online survey as part of the Harvard Flight Attendant Health Study. The analysis looked at the cancer rates in these flight attendants compared to a group of about 2,700 people who had a similar income and educational status but were not flight attendants.
The researchers found that in female flight attendants, the rates of breast cancer were about 50 percent higher than in women from the general population. In addition, melanoma rates were more than two times higher and nonmelanoma skin cancer rates were about four times higher in female flight attendants compared with women from the general population. (Nonmelanoma skin cancers include basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas.)
These elevated cancer rates were observed despite indications of good-health behaviors, such as low levels of smoking and obesity, in the flight-attendant group as a whole, the study authors said.
Cancer rates in male flight attendants were nearly 50 percent higher for melanoma and about 10 percent higher for nonmelanoma skin cancers compared with men from the general population group, according to the findings.
The potential cancer risks for flight attendants are not limited to cosmic ionizing radiation. Cabin crew members are also regularly exposed to more UV radiation than the general population, which can make these workers more vulnerable to skin cancers, Mordukhovich said.
In addition, some studies have found that circadian rhythm disruptions, such as jet lag, might be linked with an increased risk of cancer, she said. These disruptions could lead to changes in immune function and cell metabolism, which can reduce the suppression of tumors.
Another possible threat to the health of cabin crew members is chemical exposure, according to the study. The women and men who worked as flight attendants prior to 1988, when smoking was first banned on some U.S. flights, were routinely exposed to secondhand smoke while on board the aircraft.
Other chemical contaminants found in the cabin may include engine leakages, pesticides and flame retardants, which contain compounds that may act as hormone disruptors and increase the risk of some cancers, Mordukhovich said.
Some limitations of the study are that researchers were not able to take into consideration individual UV exposures, such as sunbathing habits or leisure-time activities, which could influence skin cancer risk. In addition, cancer rates were self-reported by study participants, and these diagnoses were not confirmed by a check of their medical records by the researchers, according to the study.
The study was published online today (June 25) in the journal Environmental Health.
01Egyptians feel safer than Americans: Gallup poll06.28全球最安全和最危险国家名单出炉 埃及人安全感远超美国人
02China has its role as a global powerhouse in comsumer market 07.01中国将成为名副其实的世界消费市场
03Blind student shows talent in college entrance examination06.28励志！上海盲人考生高考总分差状元仅3分！
04China will not give up ’any inch of territory’ in the Pacific, Xi tells Mattis06.28硬气！习近平会见美防长：老祖宗留下来的领土一寸也不能丢
05PM speaking notes for NYU Commencement Address07.01加拿大总理在纽约大学演讲：年轻人要多见世面
06Why is China’s short video app Douyin never fading popularity among youngsters?06.30抖音为何深受中国年轻人喜爱？
07Women care more about a prospective partner’s education: study06.29相比男性，女性更关注约会对象教育水平
08Education choice still a big problem for women to win place in economics 07.02女性经济学家为何之少？教育选择难辞其咎
09Knife-Wielding Man Attacks School Kids in Shanghai: 2 Killed, 2 Injured - Police06.29突发！上海一男子小学外持刀砍向学生，2男童死亡！
10Why being nice to your partner barely even matters06.28压力大时应该如何正确对待伴侣？