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20 November 2012

Breast cancer 'linked' to chemical jobs

Women working in jobs where they are exposed to certain chemicals may have a greater risk of developing breast cancer, suggests a new research published in the journal Environmental Health.

Researchers from Canada, the US and the UK all took part in the study, which monitored 1,006 women with breast cancer and 1,147 without the disease in Southern Ontario, Canada.They found that women who worked for 10 years in jobs classified as "highly exposed" to chemicals increased their risk by 42%. Jobs involving above average exposure to chemicals include farm work, plastics production, metal production and bar work.

For women under 40, working in metal or plastics factories resulted in a risk five times higher of being diagnosed with cancer.This study points to the value of including detailed work histories in the environmental and occupational epidemiology of breast cancer. Sources: BBC, Medical News Today, The Press Association

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