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Article
May 28, 1949

CANCERS DUE TO INDUSTRIAL TAR AND ARSENIC

JAMA. 1949;140(4):408-410. doi:10.1001/jama.1949.02900390040010
Abstract

In a recent editorial1 on the excessive incidence of cancer of the lung among workers of American chromate plants, attention was called to the increasing significance of industrially important and widely used substances in the causation of cancer in man. Several reports of English investigators discuss the occurrence of cancer of the skin and lung in workers handling inorganic arsenicals2 and of cancer of the skin in workers employed in gas and tar factories.3 The English experience in regard to occupational arsenic and tar cancers is of special interest. Available data provide ample proof as to the carcinogenic properties of tar and arsenic of American manufacture.

An analysis of the cancer mortality, corrected for age and period, among workers of an English factory making arsenical sheep dip showed a notable proportional excess of deaths due to cancer over a period of thirty-five years, as compared with the

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