DEPLETED URANIUM AND INCIDENCE OF CANCER IN BASRAH: A PRELIMINARY ECOLOGICAL STUDY
The Medical Journal of Basrah University,
Volume 27, Issue 1, Pages 1-6
Background: Basrah has been exposed to massive environmental pollution during past years including depleted
uranium (DU) as a consequence of military conflicts. Many studies have reported an increase in incidence of cancer
Objectives: To explore the ecological relationship between DU and cancer incidence in Basrah.
Material & methods: Basrah governorate was divided into seven geographical areas. Exposed areas to DU were
dotted on the map of Basrah. Incidence rates of cancer were distributed in these seven areas. Statistical analysis
included descriptive statistics and Spearman correlation analysis.
Results: This study did not find ecological correlation between incidence rate of cancer and level of exposure to DU in
Conclusions: Although the result of the ecological study may be affected by the ecological fallacy, the power to
generate hypothesis about the relationship between DU and cancer risk is still weak especially when taking into
account the results of previous studies of uranium exposure and cancer risk. Further epidemiological studies are
needed to clarify a possible carcinogenic effect of residential exposure to DU.
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