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Health Agencies Update
March 18, 1998

Radon Risk

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JAMA. 1998;279(11):818. doi:10.1001/jama.279.11.818-JHA80001-3-1

Radon gas in the home contributes to as many as 21800 lung cancer deaths in the United States each year and markedly increases lung cancer risk among smokers, according to a new report by a committee of the National Research Council.

The committee's analysis included 11 studies on the effects of occupational exposure to radon as well as 8 studies examining the effects of radon in the home. The group concluded that the risk of developing lung cancer is proportional to the amount of exposure to radon and that no evidence exists showing an exposure threshold below which radon levels are harmless.