New Studies Show Increased Cancer Risk for Firefighters Who Responded to World Trade Center Attacks

By Hansen & Rosasco

Few groups have suffered from the long-term effects of the 9/11 attacks more than firefighters and other first responders who rushed to Ground Zero in the minutes, hours, and days after the first plane hit. Since that horrible day, scores of illnesses and cancers in firefighters, recovery workers, and residents of Lower Manhattan have been attributed to the “toxic cloud” which arose from the World Trade Center rubble. That cloud included many known carcinogens such as asbestos, glass fibers, lead, dioxins, PCB (polychlorinated biphenyl), PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) and other hazards.

In the first decade after 9/11, 697 cancers were diagnosed among 15,507 participants in the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP). Now, two recent studies further confirm that New York firefighters who responded to the 9/11 attacks have a higher risk of cancer than others.

Published in the journal AMA Oncology, the reports’ authors argue that firefighters and first responders who worked at the World Trade Center site from Sept. 11, 2001 to July 25, 2002 (the day the site closed to recovery efforts) were exposed to unprecedented environmental toxins and, as a result, have increased risks of many types of cancer.

“For the next 10 months of the rescue, recovery, and cleanup effort, responders were exposed to burning subterranean fires that released trapped gases and dust, and were not extinguished until the end of December,” the researchers wrote.

In the first study, researchers reported that among World Trade Center-exposed firefighters, one can expect a “modestly higher number” of cancers, specifically prostate, thyroid, and melanoma.

The second study involved a comparison of early indicators of cancer in 9/11 firefighters and a group of demographically similar Minnesotans. Researchers found that the rate of multiple myeloma precursors (non-cancerous cells that could be evidence of future disease), specifically those correlated with a rare form of light-chain precursors, was elevated among World Trade Center responders compared to the Minnesota group.

9/11-Related Cancer Treatment Available at No Cost Through WTCHP

The WTCHP provides health screenings, medical monitoring and treatment for 9/11 emergency responders and others who have been diagnosed with a covered cancer under the WTCHP and have had their conditions certified as 9/11-related by a WTCHP physician. According to the WTCHP, more than 8,000 firefighters, first responders, and other survivors who have been diagnosed with 9/11-related cancers had enrolled in the program through December 31, 2017.

Turley Hansen & Rosasco: Helping 9/11 Victims and First Responders Exclusively

At Turley Hansen & Rosasco, our 9/11 victim compensation attorneys have been helping survivors and first responders recover compensation and get needed resources since shortly after the Towers fell. We work closely with each individual and family to fully understand their situation, condition, and needs. Using our extensive experience and deep commitment to 9/11 victims, we have recovered over $75 million in 9/11 compensation on behalf of over 1,200 clients, including hundreds of firefighters, cancer patients and their families. We are the only law firm in the country that focuses exclusively on representing victims and first responders for their 9/11 related cancers, illnesses and injuries.

Please call us at 1-855-WTC-INFO (982-4636) or fill out our contact form to schedule a free claim review today.

Posted under: 9/11 Cancers, 9/11 Victim Compensation
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