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Gaceta Sanitaria

Print version ISSN 0213-9111


RUANO-RAVINA, Alberto; DACOSTA-URBIETA, Ana; BARROS-DIOS, Juan Miguel  and  KELSEY, Karl T.. Radon exposure and tumors of the central nervous system. Gac Sanit [online]. 2018, vol.32, n.6, pp.567-575. ISSN 0213-9111.


To review the published evidence of links between radon exposure and central nervous system tumors through a systematic review of the scientific literature.


We performed a thorough bibliographic search in Medline (PubMed) and EMBASE. We combined MeSH (Medical Subject Heading) terms and free text. We developed a purpose-designed scale to assess the quality of the included manuscripts.


We have included 18 studies, 8 performed on miners, 3 on the general population and 7 on children, and the results have been structured using this classification. The results are inconclusive. An association between radon exposure and central nervous system tumors has been observed in some studies on miners, but not in others. The results observed in the general adult population and in children are also mixed, with some research evincing a statistically significant association and others showing no effect.


We cannot conclude that there is a relationship between radon exposure and central nervous system tumors. The available studies are extremely heterogeneous in terms of design and populations studied. Further research is needed in this topic, particularly in the general population residing in areas with high levels of radon.

Keywords : Central nervous system neoplasms; Radon; Systematic review.

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