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Massachusetts Cancer Registry –Pilgrim EPZ Data 1990-1999
http://www.state.ma.us/dph/bhsre/mcr/canreg.htm



Massachusetts Cancer Registry

The Massachusetts Cancer Registry (MCR) was started in 1982. The Registry collects information regarding all newly diagnosed cases of cancer in Massachusetts. The data provides important information for monitoring the impact of environmental and occupational hazards, as well as for designing and evaluating cancer prevention and control programs.

Each year, the MCR issues Cancer Incidence and Mortality in Massachusetts, which provides statewide information on cancer incidence and mortality. There is also a City/Town Supplement series with town-specific cancer incidence information. The most recent city/town supplement released to the internet is 1994-1999. We need timely publication of data on the internet.

The city/town supplement is limited in value because it provides data for the whole town and not for sub-sections within the town. We know that exposure to radiation from Pilgrim NPS is affected by weather and topography. Under normal operating conditions, we would expect greater exposure to those living along the coast than inland. During an abnormal release, we would need to know the wind direction and weather pattern to predict where the greatest probability of exposure would occur. Data should be broken down to the neighborhood, zip- code, level.

Link: http://www.mass.gov/?pageID=eohhs2terminal&&L=5&L0=Home&L1=Government&L2=Departments+and+Divisions&L3=Department+of+Public+Health&L4=Programs+and+Services+K+-+S&sid=Eeohhs2&b=terminalcontent&f=dph_cancer_g_program_cancer_registry&csid=Eeohhs2  

Data Presentation

Three measures of cancer incidence are presented in the report's data tables: expected case counts, observed case counts, and standardized incidence ratios (SIRs).

 
Standardized Incidence Ratios 
A Standardized Incidence Ratio (SIR) is an indirect method of adjusting for age and sex that describes in numerical terms how a city/town's average in the time period compares to that of the state as a whole

  • An SIR of exactly 100 indicates that a city/town's incidence for a certain type of cancer is equal to that expected based on statewide average age-specific incidence rates. 

  • An SIR of more than 100 indicates that a city/town's incidence for a certain type of cancer is higher than expected for that type of cancer based on statewide average age-specific incidence rates. 

  • An SIR of less than 100 indicates that a city/town's incidence for a certain type of cancer is lower than expected based on statewide average age-specific incidence rates. Measures of Statistical Significance 

What’s significant? Tests of statistical significance allow an estimate of the probability (referred to as a "p" value) that the difference between the observed and expected case count is due to chance alone. A p value of less than or equal to 5% (p<0.05) means that there is, at most, a 5% chance that the difference between the observed and expected case count is due to chance alone; thus, a cancer excess or deficit with such a p value is considered statistically significant. The presence or absence of statistical significance does not necessarily imply biological or public health significance. 

p<0.05: In the data tables to follow and on the web, p<0.05 is used to identify cancer types having significant excesses or deficits at the least stringent level used herein -- p<0.05. This indicates that there is, at most, 1 chance in 20 that the identified excess or deficit of cancer cases is due to chance alone. A pound symbol (#) following an SIR marks that excess or deficit as statistically significant at the p<0.05 level, but not at the higher levels (p<0.01 and p<0.001). 

p<0.01: A p value of less than or equal to 0.01 indicates that there is, at most, 1 chance in 100 that the excess or deficit of cancer cases is due to chance alone. (All cancer excesses and deficits which are statistically significant at this level are also significant at the less stringent p<0.05 level, but not all data significant at the p<0.05 level are significant at the p<0.01 level.) A tilde symbol (~) following an SIR indicates that these data are significant at both the p<0.05 and p<0.01 levels, but not at the more stringent p<0.001 level. 

p<0.001: This is the most stringent criterion employed in MDPH’s data reports to highlight cancer excesses and deficits that are least likely to be due to chance alone. This p value indicates that there is, at most, 1 chance in 1000 that the excess or deficit in observed cases is due to chance alone. A caret symbol (^) following an SIR indicates that these data are significant at all three levels of significance testing used here. 

NC*: Whenever the number of observed cases was less than five, the corresponding SIR was neither calculated nor tested for statistical significance. This is indicated with an SIR of "not calculated" followed by an asterisk (NC*). The number of observed and expected cases is shown in these circumstances


Pilgrim EPZ Data Presentation

Five types of cancers were chosen, as examples of radiation-linked disease: Brain; Multiple-Myeloma; Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma; Leukemia; and Thyroid Cancer. Incidence data over four time periods are provided.
The total number of cases, male and female, is followed by the expected number of cases
Next to the number of expected cases for each cancer type in a city/town is the corresponding SIR. Any SIR value that is not followed by a symbol described below is not statistically significant at the levels of significance testing used by MDPH, previously discussed. 
A pound symbol ( # ) following an SIR value indicates that this cancer incidence excess (#+) or deficit (#-) is statistically significant at the p<0.05 level.

Whenever the number of observed cases was less than five, the corresponding SIR was neither calculated nor tested for statistical significance; this is indicated with an SIR of "not calculated" followed by an asterisk (NC*). The number of observed and expected cases is shown in these circumstances. 

It should be pointed out that there is methodology to study small populations; however, it apparently has not been used by MDPH to study health effects from Pilgrim NPS, to date.

For updates access link referenced above.

                                             

TOWN   

BRAIN   

MULTIPLE MYELOMA NON-HODGKINS   LEUKEMIA  THYROID

CARVER

 

TOTAL

Obs    Exp

SIR

TOTAL

Obs    Exp

SIR

TOTAL

Obs   Exp

SIR

TOTAL

Obs    Exp

SIR

TOTAL

Obs    Exp

SIR

1990-‘95

6    (5.47)

110

2  (2.75)

NC*

12   11.26

107

11  (5.79)

190

3    (3.02)

NC*

1993-‘97

1    (4.22)

NC

4  (2.50)

NC*

11   10.30

107

11  (5.35)

205#+

4    (2.85)

NC

1994-‘98

1    (4.14) 

NC*

4  (2.62)

NC*

13   10.71

121

9    (5.63)

160

5    (3.10)

161

1995-‘99

1    (4.01)   

NC*

3  (2.78)

NC*

16   11.45  

140

10  (6.33)

158

3    (3.45)

NC

                     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DUXBURY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1990-‘95

7    (7.16)

98

6  (3.52)

171

4     14.43

NC*

4    (7.35)

NC*

4    (3.89)

NC*

1993-‘97

4    (5.67)

NC

6  (3.23)

186

9     13.42

67

7    (6.89)

102

3    (3.97)

NC

1994-‘98

4    (5.65)

NC*

5  (3.41)

147

9     14.04

64

8    (7.30)

110

4    (4.41)

NC*

1995-‘99

3    (5.57)

NC*

5  (3.67)

136

12   15.10

79

9    (8.33)

108

6    (4.98)

120

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KINGSTON

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1990-‘95

5  (5.03)

99

6  (2.59)

231

13/ 10.56

123

6   (5.35)

112

2   (2.75)

NC*

1993-‘97

4  (3.86)

NC

3  (2.23)

NC

10/  9.34

138

7   (4.81)

146

6   (2.74)

219

1994-‘98

4  (3.75)

NC*

0  (2.28)

NC*

13/  9.53

136

6   (4.99)

120

6   (2.97)

202

1995-‘99

1  (3.56)

NC*

0  (2.37)

NC*

8/    9.89

81

5   (5.47)

91

7   (3.21)

218

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MARSHFIELD

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1990-‘95

10/ 10.08

99

3  (4.39)

NC

20/ 19.24

104

9   (9.93)

91

11  (5.92)

186

1993-‘97

10 / 7.83

128

4  (4.01)

NC

21/ 17.76

118

5   (9.15)

55

8   (5.89)

136

1994-‘98

8   (7.47)

107

5  (4.83)

104

20/ 19.73

101

6 (10.04)

60

5   (5.56)

90

1995-‘99

7   (7.49)

93

6  (4.43)

135

16/ 19.32

83

11(10.67)

103

10 (7.10)

141

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PLYMOUTH

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1990-‘95

28/ 22.59

124

9  (10.95)

82

52/ 46.20

113

29/ 23.64

123

5 (12.80)

39#-

1993-‘97

18/17.72

102

12 (9.94)

121

43/ 42.15

102

22/ 22.01

100

8 (12.80)

63

1994-‘98

20/ 17.33

115

13(10.24)

127

42/43.69

96

25/22.98

109

12(13.95)

86

1995-‘99

20/ 16.79

119

19(10.83)

175#+

47/46.11

102

25/25.61

98

14(15.42)

91

  Obs= observed      Exp= expected   SIR = standardized incidence ratio

 

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