It has long been known that relatively high-dose ionising radiation exposure ([ 1 Gy) can induce cataract, but there has been no evidence that this occurs at low doses (\ 100 mGy). To assess low-dose risk, participants from the US Radiologic Technologists Study, a large, prospective cohort, were followed from date of mailed questionnaire survey completed during 1994–1998 to the earliest of self-reported diagnosis of cataract/cataract surgery, cancer other than non-melanoma skin, or date of last survey (up to end 2014). Cox proportional hazards models with age as timescale were used, adjusted for a priori selected cataract risk factors (diabetes, body mass index, smoking history, race, sex, birth year, cumulative UVB radiant exposure). 12,336 out of 67,246 eligible technologists reported a history of diagnosis of cataract during 832,479 person years of follow-up, and 5509 from 67,709 eligible technologists reported undergoing cataract surgery with 888,420 person years of follow-up. The mean cumulative estimated 5-year lagged eye-lens absorbed dose from occupational radiation exposures was 55.7 mGy (interquartile range 23.6–69.0 mGy). Five-year lagged occupational radiation exposure was strongly associated with self-reported cataract, with an excess hazard ratio/mGy of 0.69 9 10-3 (95% CI 0.27 9 10-3 to 1.16 9 10-3, p \ 0.001). Cataract risk remained statistically significant (p = 0.030) when analysis was restricted to \ 100 mGy cumulative occupational radiation exposure to the eye lens. A non-significantly increased excess hazard ratio/mGy of 0.34 9 10-3 (95% CI-0.19 9 10-3 to 0.97 9 10-3, p = 0.221) was observed for cataract surgery. Our results suggest that there is excess risk for cataract associated with radiation exposure from low-dose and low dose-rate occupational exposures.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||13|
|Journal||European Journal of Epidemiology|
|State||Published - Dec 2018|
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was funded by the Intramural Research Program of the Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health. CM was supported by a training grant from Midwest Center for Occupational Safety and Health CDC/NIOSH 2T42 OH008434. The views expressed herein by the authors are independent of all funding agencies.
© 2018, Springer Science and Business Media B.V.. All rights reserved.
- Cataract surgery
- Ionising radiation
- Low dose rate
- Questionnaire-based assessment
- Tissue reaction effects