This study is examining the relationship between ingested arsenic and bladder cancer in two
areas of California where a large percentage of the population was exposed to drinking water
containing arsenic at low to moderate levels.
Water supplies in many parts of the world contain naturally occurring arsenic. Previous
studies have shown that arsenic at high doses can cause cancer of the bladder. The risk at
lower doses is unknown. This study is examining the relationship between ingested arsenic
and bladder cancer in central Nevada and Kings County, California, two areas where a large
percentage of the population was exposed to drinking water containing arsenic at low to
moderate levels. Approximately 200 people with bladder cancer and 400 people without bladder
cancer will be included. Subjects are interviewed by telephone about past residences,
occupations, diet, drinking water consumption, and other lifestyle factors. Arsenic
measurements in well water have been collected from the appropriate state agencies and are
being matched with residences and drinking water consumption rates to estimate lifetime
arsenic exposures for each subject. People with bladder cancer will then be compared to
those without to see if people with cancer were more likely to have lived in areas with
arsenic in their drinking water.
Cases must meet the following criteria:
- Diagnosed with primary bladder cancer from January 1, 1997 until December 31, 2000.
- Live in the following counties at the time of diagnosis: Churchill, Lyon, Mineral,
Storey, Douglas, Carson City, Nevada, and Kings County, California
- Ages 20-85 at the time of diagnosis.
Controls will be matched to cases based on gender and five year age groups.