Original article

Scand J Work Environ Health 1988;14(3):145-152    pdf


Mesothelioma in Great Britain in 1968-1983.

by Jones RD, Smith DM, Thomas PG

The British mesothelioma register records deaths in Great Britain when the word "mesothelioma" is on the death certificate. In 1968-1983 the mesothelioma deaths among men increased from 114 to 467, while those among women increased from 38 to 90. In 1983 the crude mesothelioma death rates were 17.5 per million and 3.2 per million for the men and women, respectively. The Northern region had the highest crude rates. At the county level, the highest crude deaths rates in 1976-1983 were recorded for the men in Devon and for the women in Lancashire. Marked differences occurred in the ratio of deaths among men to deaths among women for mesothelioma of the pleura (4.6:1) and for mesothelioma of the peritoneum (2:1). The age-specific death rates for men and women diverged markedly for pleural mesothelioma but not for peritoneal mesothelioma. Trends in the use of asbestos and in age- and sex-specific death rates suggest that the annual number of mesothelioma deaths will continue to increase, possibly until the turn of the century. This increase will be concentrated among the men as the main asbestos exposure of women occurred during the war and the annual deaths due to this exposure may have already peaked.