What is the role of radiation in the etiology of multiple myeloma (MM)?

Updated: May 11, 2021
  • Author: Dhaval Shah, MD; Chief Editor: Emmanuel C Besa, MD  more...
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Radiation may play a role in some patients. An increased risk has been reported in atomic-bomb survivors exposed to more than 50 Gy: In 109,000 survivors of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki during World War II, 29 died from multiple myeloma between 1950 and 1976. Some more recent studies, however, do not confirm that these survivors have an increased risk of developing multiple myeloma.

A study of workers at the Oak Ridge Diffusion Plant in eastern Tennessee showed only a weak correlation of risk of multiple myeloma to uranium exposure. [18]

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