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Effect of Residential Proximity and Exposure to Municipal, Industrial, and Hazardous Waste Sites on Cancer Risk: A Literature Review

Gruschow, Kathleen (2023) Effect of Residential Proximity and Exposure to Municipal, Industrial, and Hazardous Waste Sites on Cancer Risk: A Literature Review. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

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The term “waste” encompasses a large array of materials, chemicals, and byproducts that are no longer of use. Waste is generated every day, by every individual, all around the world. There are different techniques of managing waste; there is concern that certain forms of waste management present a threat to the health of humans. Several studies have examined the health risks associated with waste and waste management, specifically hazardous waste. Certain geographical areas are more heavily populated with waste disposal sites, and the individuals residing in those areas may be at an increased risk for diseases such as cancer. Municipal, industrial, and hazardous waste has been linked to an increased risk for many cancer types. Given the vast amount of waste generated daily around the world, it is important to understand and analyze the existing body of literature on the risk of cancer for individuals residing in close proximity to waste sites. With the focus of residential proximity to municipal, industrial, and hazardous waste, a PubMed literature search performed in September of 2022 yielded 70 articles that examined the risk of cancer; 10 of the articles met the inclusion criteria for this review. Estimations of risk, incidence, and mortality of cancer in the United States and European countries ranged from strong positive associations with an odds ratio of 31.4, to null associations that indicated no risk. Eight of the ten studies that were analyzed found positive associations, one study resulted in mixed results, and one study resulted in non-significant results. Among adult and children populations, an increased risk of cancer was observed for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), soft-tissue sarcomas (STSs), and lung, liver, kidney, bone, bladder, gastric, and renal cancers. The positive findings among previous literature indicate that it is of public health significance to continue to investigate the relationship between residential proximity to the environmental exposures of waste and the risk of cancer. Public health regulations and policies can be developed that will reduce adverse health outcomes and diseases such as cancer by conducting further research on this relationship.


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Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Gruschow, Kathleenkgg17@pitt.edukgg17
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairTalbott, Evelyneot1@pitt.edueot1UNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberBear, Toddtobst2@pitt.edutobst2UNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberBrink, LuAnnluann.brink@alleghenycounty.usUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date: 5 January 2023
Date Type: Completion
Submission Date: 13 December 2022
Access Restriction: 2 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 2 years.
Number of Pages: 42
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Epidemiology
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Municipal solid waste, industrial waste, hazardous waste, cancer
Date Deposited: 05 Jan 2023 14:55
Last Modified: 05 Jan 2023 14:55


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