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Keywords:

  • laryngeal cancer;
  • occupational exposure;
  • asbestos;
  • detailed measurement methods

Abstract

Background

As several studies have identified asbestos exposure as an independent occupational risk factor for laryngeal cancer, the aim of our study was to confirm this association.

Methods

In a population-based case–control study on laryngeal cancer in South-West Germany occupational exposures and other risk factors were obtained by face-to-face interviews using a detailed standardized questionnaire covering the complete individual working history, supplemented by job-specific questionnaires (JSQ) especially for selected jobs known to entail exposure to asbestos. Detailed exposure information was collected over a wide range of asbestos related jobs and branches and analyzed using different modeling strategies.

Results

Seventy-three (28.4%) cases and 158 (20.5%) controls reported any exposure to asbestos. Elevated risk estimates for asbestos exposure were found. However, those became substantially reduced after adjustment for smoking and alcohol.

Conclusion

Moderately elevated risks for laryngeal cancer after exposure to asbestos were confirmed. Difficulties in the collection of adequate exposure data were demonstrated. Am. J. Ind. Med. 54:510–514, 2011. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.