# The Naked Scientists Forum

### Author Topic: What is the probability of cancer?  (Read 1676 times)

#### Atomic-S

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##### What is the probability of cancer?
« on: 06/03/2012 05:01:17 »
What is the probability that a person will contract cancer from the median natural background radiation, not including solar ultraviolet?

#### Nizzle

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##### Re: What is the probability of cancer?
« Reply #1 on: 06/03/2012 07:57:29 »
Neglectfully low compared to other causes

#### Atomic-S

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##### Re: What is the probability of cancer?
« Reply #2 on: 14/03/2012 04:18:48 »
I wonder if anyone has been able to put a number on it.

#### Nizzle

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##### Re: What is the probability of cancer?
« Reply #3 on: 15/03/2012 14:41:17 »
Impossibru!

Cancer is never detected at conception, because it's undetectable in this stage with our current technology.
And how would you separate the UV sunlight from the other natural background radiation as the cause of cancer?
You'll need to find people that never see sunlight their entire lives, and these folks are very very rare.

#### Sprool

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##### Re: What is the probability of cancer?
« Reply #4 on: 16/03/2012 11:32:12 »
The risk of contracting some type of cancer is about 30%, thats nearly one in three of us will contract cancer in some form at some stage. I would say its impossible to detect if someone has ever contracted cancer from mere background radiation, since other influences such as UV from sun will have had to be ruled out first, and very few people manage to avoid sunshine during their lives. I would assume that background radiation is negligible and insignificant in comparison.

#### wolfekeeper

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##### Re: What is the probability of cancer?
« Reply #5 on: 17/03/2012 00:52:33 »
IRC there have been attempts to do this, because the background radiation level varies due to different geologies, also different altitudes, some places are higher, and have more cosmic radiation.

I think that there is a low, but distinguishable, risk due to background radiation.

#### The Naked Scientists Forum

##### Re: What is the probability of cancer?
« Reply #5 on: 17/03/2012 00:52:33 »