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Study: 9/11 Responders Have Higher Cancer Risk

A firefighter runs from the collapsing World Trade Center on Sep. 11, 2001 (credit: Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images)

A firefighter runs from the collapsing World Trade Center on Sep. 11, 2001 (credit: Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images)

CBS New York (con't)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - A new study is bad news for those who responded to the attacks in New York City on 9/11.

Among nearly 21,000 rescue and recovery workers, the overall cancer rate is 15 percent higher than the general population, according to the study published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

This study covers just seven years after the Twin Towers fell.

Study co-author Dr. Philip Landrigan said these results fall in line with other data.

“We think it’s very striking that our study from Mount Sinai, the study from the firefighters, and the study from the city health department on the Manhattan residents are all finding roughly the same finding,” Landrigan told WCBS 880 reporter Paul Murnane.

9/11 advocate John Feal said the study should put new pressure on the federal government to add prostate cancer, which is 21 percent higher in this study, to the list of cancers covered under the Zadrogra Act.

“This study, in particular, vindicates us and is proof that, for years, what we were saying is true,” Feal told Murnane. “Every toxin in the air, individually, if you put them in a bottle, you’d have a skull and crossbones on it. You had a toxic soup that no one’s ever seen before.”

As for continued study and treatment, Landrigan said that cancer has a long incubation period, possibly up to 30 years, and they need to “be in this for the long haul.”

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