Skip to main content

Research Finds That Rising Pollution Poses Risk for Cancer Survivors

We live in a modern world where we are becoming more and more aware of the world around us and how our existence impacts this world. It goes without saying that pollution is bad for the environment, that is a given. For years, we have known this, and yet the lifestyle that modern societies around the globe is used to is one that we are either too used to or too dependent on to rewind. Today, pollution is one of the biggest and most consistently ongoing issues that the modern world deals with. We even know that pollution is bad for us. However, a recent cancer research finding suggests that pollution poses significant risks to cancer survivors.
The cancer research in a nutshell
A new study conducted by researchers at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) at the University of Utah (U of U) was published in a field journal titled the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. This study suggests that air pollution poses a significantly higher risk of hospitalization and even relapse for cancer survivors, with a specific focus on young cancer survivors. Over the years, better treatments (the result, of course, of advancements in research) mean that 80% of children diagnosed with cancer survive their diagnosis. This is incredible work, but even so, it is important to note that there are still mountains to climb.
Diving into the research in depth
Survivors still experience long-term health issues that are a result of their cancer treatment. Of course, these health issues are a better alternative than passing away from the disease, but that does not change the fact that they can be brutal and quite upsetting (to say the least). This particular research program was created to gain a stronger understanding of what pollution does to the health of cancer survivors who, quite frankly, are already at risk because of the treatment for their disease they received.
The researchers went over the medical records of around 4,000 childhood, adolescent, and young adult cancer survivors diagnosed and treated between the years 1986 to 2012. The study was divided into three categories; chemotherapy, chemotherapy-free, and cancer-free. There was a risk of respiratory hospitalization that was found to be substantially higher among survivors who had chemotherapy treatment in comparison to those who were cancer-free. This research means that there is a genuine gap between cancer survivors and healthy individuals when it comes to the ongoing effects of pollution.
How everyone can make a difference
At the end of the day, this research is great, but more to the point it highlights a significant issue that continues to become worse all the time. There are actions one can take to significantly lower their contributions to global pollution, as well as organisations and programs that one can support that work towards making large-scale changes where it matters the most. This is an ongoing battle, but the time to start is now. Quality of life is too important. To learn more about cleanliness and how our bodies respond to the world around us, you can click here.

  1. cancer