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Suggested Citation:"C. Thyroid Radaition Dose Estimates for I131." Institute of Medicine and National Research Council. 1996. The Arctic Aeromedical Laboratory's Thyroid Function Study: A Radiological Risk and Ethical Analysis. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5106.
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Appendix C Thyroid Radiation Dose Estimates for IT as Determined by the Radiation Internal Dose Information Center, Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education Population Anaktu~uk Pass Arctic Village Fort Yukon White military Other: Estimated Thyroid Doses (rad/~uCi) 2.9 3.8 I.3 I.3 I.3 Radiation dose to the thyroid gland (red) per unit radioactivity of {~3{ administered (microcurie ~,uCi]~. Estimates are based on data provided in Arctic Aeromedical :Laboratory Technical Report 57-36 and the compartmental thyroid mode} of Stabin et al. These estimates have been used in Table 2.3 to calculate average thyroid dose and thyroid cancer risk. Thyroid doses could not be estimated for Wainwright, Point Lay, or Point Hope subjects because of insufficient data in Arctic Aeromedical Laboratory Technical Report 57-36. Estimates for these subjects were based on measurements in the Cristy & Eckerman phantom (Report ORNL/TM- 8381/VI and V7) and data from the Medical Internal Radiation Dose Committee Dose Estimate Report No. 5 as published in Journal of Nuclear Medicine (1975; 16:857-60), assuming 25 percent thyroid uptake of administered il3 l. 87

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The Arctic Aeromedical Laboratory's Thyroid Function Study: A Radiological Risk and Ethical Analysis Get This Book
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During the 1950s, with the Cold War looming, military planners sought to know more about how to keep fighting forces fit and capable in the harsh Alaskan environment. In 1956 and 1957, the U.S. Air Force's former Arctic Aeromedical Laboratory conducted a study of the role of the thyroid in human acclimatization to cold. To measure thyroid function under various conditions, the researchers administered a radioactive medical trace, Iodine-131, to Alaska Natives and white military personnel; based on the study results, the researchers determined that the thyroid did not play a significant role in human acclimatization to cold.

When this study of thyroid function was revisited at a 1993 conference on the Cold War legacy in the Arctic, serious questions were raised about the appropriateness of the activity--whether it posed risks to the people involved and whether the research had been conducted within the bounds of accepted guidelines for research using human participants. In particular, there was concern over the relatively large proportion of Alaska Natives used as subjects and whether they understood the nature of the study. This book evaluates the research in detail, looking at both the possible health effects of Iodine-131 administration in humans and the ethics of human subjects research. This book presents conclusions and recommendations and is a significant addition to the nation's current reevaluation of human radiation experiments conducted during the Cold War.

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