FRANCE: the link between asbestos exposure and laryngeal and ovarian cancers is proven

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With reference to the numerous high-quality scientific studies in this regard, the Anses* concludes that there is a proven link between the risk of laryngeal cancer or ovarian cancer and occupational exposure to asbestos. This paves the way for better recognition and coverage of these two diseases by the insurance against occupational risks under the general and agricultural schemes.

This recognition seems all the more important as it is rare that patients or doctors easily make the link between the occurrence of these cancers and exposure to asbestos. Today, only bronchopulmonary and pleural cancers (mesothelioma) are covered by a table of occupational diseases linked to asbestos exposure. According to the Anses, the creation of a table including asbestos-related laryngeal and ovarian cancers would facilitate the recognition of their occupational nature and therefore the compensation of patients. Today, according to the analysis of the data collected in this report, these cancers linked to occupational exposure to asbestos are under-reported and under-recognised.

At the international level, the IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer) has recognised the link between laryngeal and ovarian cancers and asbestos exposure for ten years. Among European countries, it can be noted that several countries have already included these cancers on their list of occupational diseases:

  • Laryngeal cancer: Spain since 2015 or Belgium since 2019;
  • ovarian cancer: Germany in 2017 or Belgium in 2022.

Anses: National Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health Safety

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