Cancer incidence among members of the Norwegian trade union of insulation workers.

Research paper by Bente B Ulvestad, Kristina K Kjaerheim, Jan Ivar JI Martinsen, Gunnar G Mowe, Aage A Andersen

Indexed on: 16 Jan '04Published on: 16 Jan '04Published in: Journal of occupational and environmental medicine / American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine


Insulation work has been described as an occupation with high exposure to asbestos. A cohort of members of the Norwegian Trade Union of Insulation Workers (n = 1116), hired between 1930 and 1975, was established. During 2002, the cohort was linked to the Cancer Registry of Norway. The standardized incidence ratio (SIR) of pleural mesothelioma was 12.9 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 6.0-24.6). Two cases with peritoneal mesotheliomas were found (SIR, 14.8; 95% CI = 1.8-53.4). The SIR of lung cancer was 3.0 (95% CI = 2.3-3.8). Four cases of lung cancer were observed among cork workers without any exposure to asbestos, but to cork dust and tar smoke (SIR, 5.3; 95% CI = 1.5-13.6). Our study showed a high risk of mesothelioma and an elevated risk of lung cancer among members of the Trade Union of Insulation Workers.