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Study shows higher cancer rate among Holocaust survivors
« on: July 16, 2017, 10:33:10 AM »

Study shows higher cancer rate among Holocaust survivors
Research by Sheba Medical Center indicates severe trauma has consequences decades later
BY TIMES OF ISRAEL STAFF | July 13, 2017, 8:51 pm | 1

   The former inmates who were transported by train from Bergen-Belsen
   were photographed in Farsleben, Germany, shortly after their liberation
   by US troops on Apr. 13, 1945. (United States Holocaust Memorial
   Museum, courtesy of George Gross)

   The extreme trauma experienced by Holocaust survivors has severe
   implications on their health even tens of years later, with an Israeli
   study finding that they were far more likely to get certain forms of
   The study, which was published earlier this month by the American
   Cancer Society’s Cancer journal, examined 152,622 Holocaust survivors
   over the course of 45 years in Israel. It compared cancer rates among
   those who were entitled to compensation for their experiences versus
   those who were not, as well as those who were from countries ruled by
   the Nazis and those who were not.
   Generally those who were entitled to compensation suffered the worst
   persecution under the Nazis, surviving death camps, concentration camps
   and ghettos.
   The Ramat Gan Sheba Medical Center’s Siegal Sadetzki, who led the the
   research team, said she carried out the study in order to determine if
   conditions experienced by Holocaust survivors — such as lack of food,
   overcrowding, disease and immense stress — impacted their chances of
   developing cancer.
   A group of concentration camp prisoners who were liberated on a death
   march from Dachau sit on a bench waiting to receive food from
   Japanese-American soldiers with the 522nd Field Artillery Battalion.
   (Courtesy USHMM/Eric Saul)

   “The data emphasize the importance of learning about the combined
   effect of several exposures occurring intensely and contemporaneously
   on cancer risk, such as those that unfortunately occurred during World
   War II,” Sadetzki said, adding that “such inspection cannot be
   conducted by experimental studies and could only be evaluated by using
   observational epidemiological surveys.”
   Based on this criteria, the study found that 22 percent of those who
   received compensation developed cancer, compared to 16% of those who
   did not. Additionally, those who were awarded compensation had a 12%
   higher chance of having colon cancer and a 37% higher chance of having
   lung cancer.
   The study also found that those born in countries occupied by the Nazis
   had a eight percent higher risk of developing cancer than those who
   were not, as well a eight percent higher risk of colon cancer and a 12%
   higher risk of lung cancer.
   A British social worker treats survivors of the Bergen-Belsen
   concentration camp soon after liberation (Imperial War Museum)

   The studies findings did not show any higher risk of breast or
   gynecologic cancer for female Holocaust survivors compared to the
   general population.
   While the study’s authors said their research indicated that survivors
   have a higher chance of developing cancer, there is not yet enough
   information about the matter to make a definitive conclusion.
   The research team also noted that there may be a parallels between
   cancer rates of Holocaust survivors and the rates in other groups who
   have experienced severe social deprivation.
   {correction by Ian Strange · The College of Law
   Belsen camp was liberated in 15th, not 13th April 1945 by men of the
   British 15th Armoured Division, having been first discovered by an
   advance party of British SAS.
   Like · Reply · Jul 14, 2017 2:58am } "

``I hope that the fair, and, I may say certain prospects of success will not induce us to relax.''
-- Lieutenant General George Washington, commander-in-chief to
   Major General Israel Putnam,
   Head-Quarters, Valley Forge, 5 May, 1778