Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2014 December [Link]
JÃ¤rvholm B, AstrÃ¶m E.
To study the risk of lung cancer in heavily asbestos-exposed workers after the exposure to asbestos has ended.
Lung cancer was studied in a cohort of 189,896 Swedish construction workers through a linkage with the Swedish Cancer Registry. Asbestos exposure was estimated by the incidence of malignant mesothelioma in the occupational group.
There were in total 2835 cases of lung cancer. Workers with heavy exposure to asbestos had an increased risk of lung cancer (relative risks = 1.74; 95% confidence interval, 1.25 to 2.41) before exposure ended and a similar risk to those with low exposure 20 years after the exposure had ceased (relative risks = 0.94; 95% confidence interval, 0.77 to 1.15).
Workers with heavy exposure to asbestos have a similar risk of lung cancer as persons with low or no exposure 20 years after the exposure has ended.