This report has two aims: (1) to describe and analyze the age/time patterns of excess cancer risk in the atomic bomb survivor cohort followed up by the Radiation Effects Research Foundation (RERF), and (2) to describe statistical methods which are used in RERF's analyses of data on mortality and morbidity in the cohort. In contrast to previous analyses of the cohort cancer mortality data, substantial use is made of Japanese national cancer rates for the purpose of investigation of the age/time variations in excess risk. This analysis considers mortality from all cancers except leukemia as a group. Primary attention is given to description in terms of the age-specific excess relative risk, but the importance of appropriate descriptions of the absolute excess risk is also emphasized. When models for the excess risk allow variation with age and time, both constant relative and absolute excess risk models provide similar fits to the data. Previous reports have indicated that for a given age at exposure and sex, the excess age-specific relative risk is remarkably constant throughout the current follow-up period. Statistical analysis here indicates that for those less than about 35 years of age at exposure there is no departure from this pattern, beyond ordinary sampling variation. For those over about 35 years of age at exposure, there is modest evidence of an increasing trend in the excess relative risk, which could plausibly be attributed to effects related to minimal latent period. Some brief consideration is given to modeling the absolute excess risk as the product of an age-at-exposure and time-since-exposure effect. Interpretation of these results, particularly in regard to projections beyond the current follow-up, is discussed.

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