Diazinon use by farm workers is associated with elevated lung cancer risk

Photo credit: Hey Paul Studios Photo credit: Hey Paul Studios

The Agricultural Health Study investigated the relationship between the use of the organophosphate pesticide diazinon and cancer risk in pesticide applicators, primarily farmers, from North Carolina and Iowa. A recent study published in the Journal Occupational and Environmental Medicine, used data from over 25,000 participants to assess whether or not cancer incidence is linked to diazinon use. Results suggest that exposure to diazinon significantly increases the risk of lung cancer in applicants who used the pesticide the most frequently and were likely to have experienced higher intensity exposures based on factors such application method, and the use of personal protective equipment. While the risk of kidney cancer and aggressive prostate cancer was also elevated, the association was non-significant.