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February 1982

No Link Between Poland Syndrome and Leukemia?

Author Affiliations

Clinical Epidemiology Branch National Cancer Institute 5A21 Landow Bldg Bethesda, MD 20205

Am J Dis Child. 1982;136(2):176. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1982.03970380088026

Sir.—In reporting the seventh case known with leukemia and Poland syndrome, or at least with absent pectoralis major muscle (APM), Enzenauer and Hastings (Journal 1981;135:763-765) suggested that the number of patients with both diseases in developed countries did not exceed the number expected by chance, as previously thought. Actually, six of these patients were born in the United States between 1962 and 1969, as best we can determine from the case reports or as confirmed by the original authors, and most were in the northeast (New York, Long Island, Newark, NJ, New Hampshire, Denver, and one unstated).

Among the 37.6 million births in the United States between 1962 and 1971, an estimated 7,000 had APM, given an incidence of 1.88 per 10,000 births for APM detected by 1 year of age in the Collaborative Perinatal Project at about the same time.1 The number of cases of leukemia expected