Keywords: Chernobyl accident, radio-anxiety, radiological health effects, nuclear accidents, low radiation, thyroid cancer, leukaemia, decreased fertility, hereditary effects, radiation exposure
Health effects 20 years after the Chernobyl accident
The Chernobyl accident was the worst catastrophe involving radiation to humans. Since then, it has unfortunately been providing a main cause of radio-anxiety. WHO suggested 4000 people could have died or could die in the future of emergency workers and residents of most contaminated areas while Greenpeace insisted that there would be 93,080 people in the world. Though the incidence of thyroid cancer increased at the Chernobyl area, it is not accepted by the experts because the area that was less contaminated by radiation has a greater reported incidence of thyroid cancer. So, it might be due to a screening effect. There is no convincing evidence that the incidence of leukaemia and solid cancer has been increased in the exposed populations, but it remains a controversial issue. Additionally, the apparent evidence of decreased fertility and increased hereditary effects was not observed in the general population.