23 Nov 2012

Ireland - Let’s not dilute the issue of our water fluoridation

Let’s not dilute the issue of our water fluoridation November 23, 2012 An abridged version of an open letter and further correspondence to Dr Harry Comber, Director, National Cancer Registry Ireland. Cc: An Taoiseach Enda Kenny; Dr James Reilly, Minister for Health; Simon Coveney, Minister For Agriculture, Food and Fisheries; Phil Hogan, Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government; Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, HSE; Dr Ivan Perry, Professor of Public Health Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University College Cork; and Laura Burke, Director General, Environmental Protection Agency. Dear Sirs and Madam, I am writing regarding the information provided in the National Cancer Registry Ireland (NCRI) cancer statistics maps, reported in ‘Water fluoridation-cancer link is ‘improbable’’ (IMT, November 2, http://bit.ly/XxrgYa), in particular the comments by the NCRI and Northern Ireland Cancer Registry (NICR), as quoted “that the maps did not show a clear difference between Northern Ireland (NI) and Ireland”. This is quite remarkable, as you are contradicting the stated findings as noted in the Cancer Atlas report, which clearly states the following regarding the results of the mapping exercise: “The risk of developing many of the cancers presented was higher in RoI than in NI. The risk of non-melanoma skin cancer, melanoma, leukaemia, bladder, pancreas and brain/central nervous system cancers was significantly higher for both sexes in RoI. For men, the risk of prostate cancer was higher in RoI and, for women, cancer of the oesophagus and cervix.” Furthermore, the report concluded that “there was a marked geographical variation in the risk of some common cancers… the most consistent geographical distribution of cancer risk was seen for three cancers (pancreas, brain/central nervous system and leukaemia), which showed an increasing gradient of risk from North-East to South-West”. The All Ireland Cancer Atlas report documents that the risk for bladder cancer was up to 14 per cent higher in the Republic of Ireland (RoI), leukaemia up to 23 per cent, pancreatic cancer up to 22 per cent, skin cancer up to 18 per cent, prostate cancer 29 per cent, oesophageal cancer up to 8 per cent, brain cancer up to 20 per cent and cancer of the cervix and uterotis up to 11 per cent higher compared to NI. Coincidentally, this also follows the variation in osteosarcoma, an often fatal childhood cancer for which the incidence is also known to be higher in the RoI compared to the North. The peer-reviewed journal Cancer Causes and Control published a study by Harvard University in 2006 in which it was stated that fluoride in drinking water significantly increased the risk of developing this disease in teenage boys........

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