Latest Study Links Radon To Increased Risk Of Malignant Skin Cancer, Risk Higher In Young People

By Dipannita | Jun 19, 2017 02:50 PM EDT

Radon can cause skin cancer or malignant melanoma. In a study conducted by Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH), this new connection has been established and it was also found that the risk of developing the skin cancer due to radon is higher in young people.

All those who believed till date that radon causes lung cancer should know that the naturally occurring gas, radioactive in nature, is also linked with skin cancer or malignant melanoma, MedicalXpress reported. According to the latest study conducted by Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH), radon is also responsible for increasing the risk of skin cancer. Martin Roosli, the co-author of the study said that their research shows that the radioactive alpha particles released by radon after it decays, not only kill the lung tissues but may also affect the skin adversely.

Shedding light on the new finding, he said that this aspect of radon was not researched before. Also, it was found that the risk of radon-induced skin cancer was higher in young people, EurekaAlert has learned. The risk for people in their 30s was found to increase by 50% when radon exposure increased by 100Bg/m which is relatively lower in old people, in their 60s. For them, the risk increased by only 16%.

This study is quite significant in the light of the lives that have been lost in Switzerland due to the disease. For those who do not know, Switzerland has the third highest rate of skin cancer in the world. It is quite above the average of Central Europe. Also, in the past twenty years, the Swiss population has witnessed a sharp rise in the number of malignant melanoma cases but the relieving part is that these cases can be reduced by constructing proper houses as residential exposure to radon is a major cause of concern for doctors.

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