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US study finds Agent Orange linked to kidney cancer

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A new study has suggested a link between Agent Orange and kidney cancer in US veterans exposed to the herbicide during the Vietnam War, the U.S. News & World Report recently reported.

The study was conducted by the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Los Angeles on 297 patients who were diagnosed with kidney cancer between 1987 and 2009.

Thirteen of them said they had been exposed to Agent Orange, while reports and documents of the exposure were available for ten of them, according to the study presented at the American Urological Association’s annual meeting in Washington D.C. on Saturday.

Tests found that nine of the ten patients with documented exposure had clear-cell cancers which typically have worse outcomes than papillary tumors. The other had both clear-cell and papillary cancers, according to the study.

Clear-cell and papillary cancers are types of renal cancer.

During the follow-up of 54 months on average, four of them saw their cancers spread to other areas and one died from his cancer.

However, U.S. News & World Report noted that research presented at meetings should be viewed as preliminary because it has not been subjected to the peer review that typically accompanies publication in a medical journal.

Dr. Anthony Y. Smith, the press conference’s moderator, wrote in a news release, "This data indicates that we may need to better determine whether exposure to these chemicals should be considered a risk factor for kidney cancer."

Source: Thanh Nien

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