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Japan:Taking thyroid tests to the children in Fukushima

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Laaska News  Nov. 15,2011

Doctors in Fukushima Prefecture are hitting the road to improve children’s’ access to thyroid tests in an effort to spot possible health problems associated with the nuclear accident in the prefecture.

Medical personnel visited a health center and a nursery school in Kawamata Town on Monday and conducted ultrasound scans on about 240 children. The town is about 47 kilometers from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

The tests, which began last month, were initially available only at a medical university in Fukushima City.

People not living in the city found it hard to bring their children to the university for the tests.

The tests cover about 360,000 children in the prefecture who were 18 years old or younger as of April 1st, about 20 days after the accident.

Radioactive iodine released from the nuclear plant could accumulate in the thyroid glands of children and raise their risk of developing cancer.

The results of the tests will be mailed out in about a month.

The Fukushima children will undergo thyroid checks every two years until they turn 20, and once every five years after that.
Nov. 14.


Laaska News.