Wisconsin Farmer Cancer Mortality, 1981 to 1990: Selected Malignancies

Authors

  • Lawrence P. Hanrahan PhD, MS,

    Corresponding author
      Senior Epidemiologist, Section of Environmental Epidemiology and Prevention, Division of Health, State of Wisconsin, 1 West Wilson St., P.O. Box 309, Madison, WI 53701-0309.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Henry A. Anderson MD,

  • Linda K. Haskins BS,

  • Joseph Olson BS,

  • Karen Lappe RN,

  • Douglas Reding MD


  • This report was funded in part by a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

Senior Epidemiologist, Section of Environmental Epidemiology and Prevention, Division of Health, State of Wisconsin, 1 West Wilson St., P.O. Box 309, Madison, WI 53701-0309.

Abstract

Abstract: Cancer mortality risks for Wisconsin white male farmers were examined during the years 1981 to 1990. Four malignancies were studied: Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, melanoma, colon cancer, and rectal cancer. Occupation coded deaths were segmented into farmer and nonfarmer groups and population counts for the groups were estimated from 1980 and 1990 Bureau of the Census data. Standardized mortality ratios (SMRs) were constructed from the ratio of observed farmer deaths and the expected number of farmer deaths. Expected deaths were generated from the underlying statewide nonfarmer rate for the malignancy multiplied into the farmer population at risk. Farmers had significantly lower mortality risks for melanoma (SMR: 0.659; 95% CI: 0.993-0.326) and colon cancer (SMR: 0.763; 95% CI: 0.928-0.599). Farmers also exhibited a nonsignificant decrement for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (SMR 0.930; 95% CI: 1.214-0.645). For rectal cancer, farmers experienced a slightly higher but essentially the same risk as nonfarmers (SMR: 1.013; 95%CI: 1.418-0.608)—the SMR was not significant. This study corroborates a number of cancer incidence and mortality investigations demonstrating that farmers generally experience the same or lower mortality risks for these malignancies.

Ancillary