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Early results show lower cancer rates than expected among Air Force nuclear missile personnel WHIO TV 7 and WHIO Radio [Video]

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Blood Cancer

WASHINGTON — (AP) — The Air Force is reporting the first data on cancer diagnoses among troops who worked with nuclear missiles and, while the data is only about 25% complete, the service says the numbers are lower than what they expected.

The Air Force said so far it has identified 23 cases of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a blood cancer, in the first stage of its review of cancers among service members who operated, maintained or supported silo-based Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missiles.

To identify those cases the Air Force looked at all missile community personnel who used the military health care system, or TRICARE, from 2001 to 2021, a population they said is about 84,000 people and includes anyone who operated, maintained, secured or otherwise supported the Air Force nuclear mission.

Within that community about 8,000 served as missileers, young men and women who are underground in launch control capsules for 24 to 48 hours …

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