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NCRP Report No. 126, Uncertainties in Fatal Cancer Risk Estimates Used in Radiation Protection

NCRP Report No. 126 addresses the uncertainty in the current risk estimates utilized for radiation protection. The bases for the current estimates start with the overall cancer mortality experience up through 1988 for the survivors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. After reviewing past and present risk estimates, the Report then delves into the major parameters thought to contribute to the uncertainty in the current risk estimates utilized for radiation protection.

First, the Report address the epidemiological uncertainty in the Japanese survivor data, looking at things such as biases due to errors in detection and biases due to city differences and other biases. Secondly, the Report addresses the dosimetrical uncertainty in their dosimetry data by reviewing random errors in dose and biases in gamma-ray measurements, uncertainty in survivor shielding, neutron dose, and neutron weight. Thirdly, the Report reviews the factors involved in uncertainty of transfer of radiation induced fatal cancer risks between populations such as the Japanese and United States populations. Fourthly, the Report addresses the factors influencing the uncertainty in projection of current fatal cancer risk estimates to lifetime risk. Fifthly, the Report considers the uncertainty in extrapolating risk obtained at high dose to that appropriate for low dose and low-dose rate exposure. Lastly, the Report addresses the combination of the above uncertainties.


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