Why is cancer common in firefighters?

In addition to the danger of putting out fires, firefighters are at an increased risk for different types of cancer due to the smoke and hazardous chemicals they are exposed to in the line of duty. There have been multiple studies that show this increased risk for cancer.

How common is cancer in firefighters?

“In all, researchers found that more than two-thirds of firefighters–68 percent–develop cancer, compared to about 22 percent for the general population…” “Firefighters…have a 68% higher risk of being diagnosed with cancer than the general population.”

What kind of cancer do firefighters get?

The original studies (n = 104) analyzed in the SRs were published between 1959 and 2018. The results consistently reported a significant increase in the incidence of rectal, prostate, bladder and testicular cancers as well as mesothelioma and malignant melanoma in firefighters compared to the general population.

Why do firefighters get cancer?

Firefighters can be exposed to hundreds of different chemicals in the form of gases, vapors, and particulates. Some of these chemical substances are known or suspected to cause cancer. Some of these hazardous substances are byproducts of combustion or burning, such as benzene and formaldehyde.

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Why is testicular cancer common in firefighters?

LeMasters explained that firefighters are exposed to many compounds designated as carcinogens by the International Agency for Research on Cancer – including benzene, diesel engine exhaust, chloroform, soot, styrene and formaldehyde.

Do firefighters have a greater risk of cancer?

In addition to the danger of putting out fires, firefighters are at an increased risk for different types of cancer due to the smoke and hazardous chemicals they are exposed to in the line of duty. There have been multiple studies that show this increased risk for cancer.

What is the number 1 killer of firefighters?

Cancer is now the number one cause of death among firefighters. According to data from the nonprofit Firefighter Cancer Support Network (active in the USA and Canada) cancer caused 66% of the career firefighter line-of-duty deaths from 2002 to 2019.

What is the life expectancy of a firefighter?

The average life expectancy at age 60 for police and firefighters was 24 years for men and 26 years for women. For non-police and fire, the comparable figures were 25 years for men and 27 years for women – just one year longer! And the pattern was quite consistent across states and localities.

What toxins are firefighters exposed to?

The results indicate that firefighters are frequently exposed to significant concentrations of hazardous materials including carbon monoxide, benzene, sulphur dioxide, hydrogen cyanide, aldehydes, hydrogen chloride, dichlorofluoromethane, and particulates.

How are firefighters exposed to carcinogens?

1. Inhalation Exposures The most common route of exposure to carcinogens for fire fighters is through inhalation. When responding to a call, the chemicals released in the smoke and soot do not disappear when the fire is extinguished. These chemicals remain airborne through all phases of fire activities.

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Do firefighters get lung cancer?

Conclusions: We found no evidence of an excess lung cancer risk related to occupational exposure as a firefighter.

Do firefighters have health problems?

Firefighters face serious risks on the job such as heat exhaustion, burns, physical and mental stress. Additionally, they frequently come into contact with high levels of carbon monoxide and other toxic hazards. With these dangerous exposures, this line of work presents a likelihood for many diseases.

Why do firefighters have dalmatians?

Dalmatians and horses are very compatible, so the dogs were easily trained to run in front of the engines to help clear a path and guide the horses and the firefighters to the fires quickly. They are still chosen by many fire fighters as pets in honor of their heroism in the past.

Do firefighters get multiple myeloma?

Although some studies have found an elevated risk of multiple myeloma and other cancers in first responders, others have not. In the most recent and largest study to date, exposed firefighters had roughly twice the risk of developing multiple myeloma precursor disease as the general population.