Childhood cancer in the offspring born in 1921-1984 to US radiologic technologists

K. J. Johnson, B. H. Alexander, M. M. Doody, A. J. Sigurdson, M. S. Linet, L. G. Spector, R. W. Hoffbeck, S. L. Simon, R. M. Weinstock, J. A. Ross

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34 Scopus citations


We examined the risk of childhood cancer (<20 years) among 105 950 offspring born in 1921-1984 to US radiologic technologist (USRT) cohort members. Parental occupational in utero and preconception ionising radiation (IR) testis or ovary doses were estimated from work history data, badge dose data, and literature doses (the latter doses before 1960). Female and male RTs reported a total of 111 and 34 haematopoietic malignancies and 115 and 34 solid tumours, respectively, in their offspring. Hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated using Cox proportional hazards regression. Leukaemia (n=63) and solid tumours (n=115) in offspring were not associated with maternal in utero or preconception radiation exposure. Risks for lymphoma (n=44) in those with estimated doses of <0.2, 0.2-1.0, and >1.0 mGy vs no exposure were non-significantly elevated with HRs of 2.3, 1.8, and 2.7. Paternal preconception exposure to estimated cumulative doses above the 95th percentile (≥82 mGy, n=6 cases) was associated with a non-significant risk of childhood cancer of 1.8 (95% CI 0.7-4.6). In conclusion, we found no convincing evidence of an increased risk of childhood cancer in the offspring of RTs in association with parental occupational radiation exposure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)545-550
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Journal of Cancer
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 5 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank the radiologic technologists who participated in this study; Jeremy Miller of Information Management Services Inc. for his assistance with data analysis; Diane Kampa and Allison Iwan of the University of Minnesota Division of Environmental Health Sciences for their help with data collection. This study was supported by the Children’s Cancer Research Fund (Minneapolis, MN, USA); National Institutes of Health (NIH) Grant T32 CA099936; NIH contracts N01-CP-31018 and N01-CP-51016.


  • Aetiology
  • In utero
  • Malignancy
  • Preconception
  • Radiation
  • Risk factors


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