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Pylons 'may be a leukaemia risk'
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Roman Bystrianyk
medicine forum Guru


Joined: 02 May 2005
Posts: 454

PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2005 2:41 pm    Post subject: Pylons 'may be a leukaemia risk' Reply with quote

"Pylons 'may be a leukaemia risk'", BBC News, June 3, 2005,
Link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/4602315.stm

Living too close to overhead power lines appears to increase the risk
of childhood leukaemia, researchers say.

A major study found children who had lived within 200 metres of high
voltage lines at birth had a 70% higher risk of leukaemia than those
600m or more away.

But the Oxford University team stressed that there are no accepted
biological reasons for the results and that they may, therefore, be
chance.

Alternatively, it may be down to the environments where pylons are
located.

And they said it did not resolve the debate about whether it is unsafe
to live next to power lines.

Around 1% of homes in the UK are estimated to be within 200 metres of
high voltage National Grid power lines.

The researchers said their findings showed living in such close
proximity to power lines at birth could account for five extra cases of
childhood leukaemia in a total of around 400 that occur in a year - a
total of 1%.

The British Medical Journal study did not look at level of exposure to
magnetic fields

But other scientists who have considered the issue have suggested that
low frequency magnetic fields, such as those caused by the production
of electricity, could possibly be linked to cancer.

However, others have disputed this link.

And experts agree that there are likely to be many factors involved in
leukaemia, including genes and the environment.

Even if the apparent risk was found to be real, the number of cases of
leukaemia that would result would be very few, said the authors.

The study

The latest study was carried out by Dr Gerald Draper and colleagues
from the Childhood Cancer Research Group at Oxford University and Dr
John Swanson, a scientific adviser at National Grid Transco.

It looked at more than 29,000 children with cancer, including 9,700
with leukaemia, born between 1962 and 1995, and a control group of
healthy youngsters in England and Wales.

The researchers measured the distance from children's home addresses at
birth from the nearest high voltage power line.

They found that 64 children with leukaemia lived within 200 metres of
the line, while 258 lived between 200-600 metres away.

Overall, youngsters living within 200 metres of the lines were about
70% more likely to develop leukaemia, and those living between 200 and
600 metres away about 20% more likely to develop leukaemia than those
who lived beyond 600 metres from high voltage pylons.

Although the trend was definite, the researchers said they could not
reasonably explain why it occurred.

For this reason, they caution that it might be down to factors other
than the pylons themselves, such as the type of people who live near
pylons or the general environment where pylons are located, which they
plan to investigate.

Debate

Eddie O'Gorman, chairman of the UK charity Children with Leukaemia,
said: "There is now a clear case for immediate government action.

"Planning controls must be introduced to stop houses and schools being
built close to high voltage overhead power lines."

But Professor John Toy, Cancer Research UK's Medical Director, said:
"People who currently live or have lived near power lines in the past
need not panic about this research. The triggers that cause childhood
leukaemia are most likely a random course of events over which a parent
has no control.

A spokesman from the Health Protection Agency said the study findings
suggested that at least some of the increased leukaemia risk might be
associated with factors other than electromagnetic fields.

Dr David Grant of Leukaemia Research said: "We recognise there is a lot
of public anxiety and concern about living close to pylons and exposure
to power-frequency magnetic fields.

"There is no reason why anyone should be advised to move house on the
basis of these new results."

There are around 7,000km of high voltage power lines involved in the
transmission of electricity across England and Wales, and 21,800 steel
pylons.
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Jeff
medicine forum Guru


Joined: 25 Mar 2005
Posts: 1313

PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2005 4:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Pylons 'may be a leukaemia risk' Reply with quote

"Roman Bystrianyk" <rbystrianyk@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1117816875.877307.224400@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com...
Quote:
"Pylons 'may be a leukaemia risk'", BBC News, June 3, 2005,

How are pylons a leukemia risk? I can see that they study the effects of the
electicity in the wires, but I don't see the pylons, themselves, as being a
problem. I don't know why you chose this as the subject.

Quote:
Link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/4602315.stm

Living too close to overhead power lines appears to increase the risk
of childhood leukaemia, researchers say.

A major study found children who had lived within 200 metres of high
voltage lines at birth had a 70% higher risk of leukaemia than those
600m or more away.

But the Oxford University team stressed that there are no accepted
biological reasons for the results and that they may, therefore, be
chance.

Alternatively, it may be down to the environments where pylons are
located.

I suspect that there is more industrial waste and poverty around the power
lines. It is the industrial waste and poverty that is responsible, not the
eletromagnetic fields.

Jeff
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