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Ruckus continues over Fukushima nosebleed comic

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By YURI KAGEYAMA

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Sweeping your personal impressions and your feelings under the carpet does not benefit the country as a whole. Awareness of the suffering and the damage that has been done to such a beautiful part of the country is essential for healing.

Had the artist been an outsider attacking Japan or if the depiction was unrealistic then it would deserve some discourse. It is just a comic after all. Not a textbook in a classroom

14 ( +15 / -2 )

States that; So far there has been no confirmed illness related to radiation .... Do they really expect the public to believe this? Who writes these things? And let me understand something here, comics about incense, rape, pedophila, and violence are okay but comics about public health and safety is not?

19 ( +21 / -2 )

Seventy-five confirmed and suspected cases of thyroid cancer have been found in those tests, but it is unclear whether they are linked to radiation.

Well then, that must be a very strange coïncidence...? (We shouldn't forget that "only the truth hurts...")

9 ( +11 / -1 )

Seventy-five confirmed and suspected cases of thyroid cancer have been found in those tests, but it is unclear whether they are linked to radiation.

It's interesting that none of those Fukushima cases have been linked to radiation from the exploded reactors. At the same time they have no difficulty, even now, in attributing cases of thyroid cancer in people who were in Hiroshima and Nagasaki to radiation from the nuclear bombs.

I expect the difference is due to the "foreign" radiation in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, whilst "Japanese" radiation, courtesy of Tepco, is harmless.

13 ( +14 / -2 )

"discrimination against Fukushima was causing far more real suffering, not radiation."

Please remember this everyone. And then consider what you write.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

'So far, there has been no confirmed illnesses related to radiation among nuclear plant workers or residents of Fukushima. The nuclear disaster began three years ago in March 2011, when a giant tsunami disabled backup generators at three reactors. Entire towns around the Fukushima plant remain no-go zones.'

According to whom? Hasn't it already been reported that thyroid cancer in children(in Fukushima) is significantly higher than the rest of Japan? Haven't people in Fukushima experienced nosebleeds,teeth falling out etc? Of course, the genetic damage evident in plants,insects and birds cannot possibly be the result of the largest radioactive contamination in human history can it?

Which doctors in Japan are skilled at pinpointing illness as a result of radiation poisoning? Ever heard of a radiation scanner in use at your local hospital?

Keep smiling........!

8 ( +9 / -1 )

As a form of entertainment, the mangaka was on firm ground UNTIL he titled it, "The Truth About Fukushima." Unless he has documented cases of an unusually high number of nosebleeds in people from there, he's going to be facing some heat on this.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

"Seventy-five confirmed and suspected cases of thyroid cancer have been found in those tests, but it is unclear whether they are linked to radiation."

Yeah, because so many people under 18 all across Japan have thyroid cancer and the fact that it's so much higher in Fukushima is, of course, not linkable. And all those people, a mayor included, suffering nose bleeds? Hell, just the air in Fukushima is drier, I guess.

Avoid all products from the area, people.

9 ( +14 / -5 )

"discrimination against Fukushima was causing far more real suffering, not radiation."

If only there were proof that the government is right!! We will only know in 20 or 30 years time I guess...

4 ( +5 / -1 )

"Seventy-five confirmed and suspected cases of thyroid cancer have been found in those tests, but it is unclear whether they are linked to radiation."

Yeah, because so many people under 18 all across Japan have thyroid cancer and the fact that it's so much higher in Fukushima is, of course, not linkable.

No, actually in other parts of Japan they haven't tested all of the children and they haven't tested using the same equipment that they are using in Fukushima. More children will be found to have thyroid anomalies because they've been tested. Children in other parts of Japan will have thyroid anomalies but because they don't test for them they won't be found. There's so much about it on the internet.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

I started reading this manga about a year ago, but it'll be a while before I make it to this issue :/

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I will never diss manga again. Thank you Tetsu Kariya!

If it takes a comic book to open more eyes and get some dialog going, then that's what it takes. Anything is better than the dismissive cold shoulders I get when I rarely bring up the topic, mostly it's an off hand remark when some start griping about Chinese food or pollution.

And lets get something straight please, this is an on going disaster and no one knows what's going to happen tomorrow or next month or next year. So, to only talk about what's happing "today" whether it's "no clear evidence of" radiation sickness or thyroid problems, is illogical at best and deceptively evil at worst.

4 ( +4 / -1 )

Heda_Madness: "More children will be found to have thyroid anomalies because they've been tested."

And where is it they're being tested again? and why? That's all that needs to be said.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

No it isn't all that needs to be said. You're saying that the results are higher in Fukushima but ignoring the fact that if you test more and if you look harder you will find more.

You make a categorical claim that the reason why it's higher is purely because of the Fukushima incident. And whilst there will be a small increase caused by Fukushima (WHO, UN etc) the reason why there is a significantly higher number than elsewhere is because they are testing more and they are testing it more stringently.

But I forgot, you don't believe in science do you?

-8 ( +3 / -11 )

We just do not know, if it's anecdotal or science due to the governments pathetic history of NOT telling the facts. Or quietly releasing them piecemeal months or years latter.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Ah yes. The old, say something couldn't be because of Fukushima and you get voted down.

Dillwyn Williams, emeritus professor of pathology at Cambridge University, pointed out that a noticeable increase in thyroid cancers was not observed until three to four years after the Chernobyl accident.

"Much less radioactivity was released from Fukushima than from Chernobyl," he said. "Most of [the Fukushima radiation] was blown over the Pacific Ocean, and thyroid doses in the most-affected areas are low compared to Chernobyl.

"It is very unlikely there will be a large increase in thyroid cancer or any other health problems, apart from anxiety and psychological difficulties.

Here's another quote from another expert: Gerry Thomas, professor of molecular pathology at Imperial College, London University, blames growing anxiety among Fukushima residents on "pseudo-scientists who can shout louder than real scientists".

I guess she's been reading the Japan Today comments threads.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

dude its a manga, do people actually take it as truth?

0 ( +1 / -2 )

<>http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/05/20/national/number-fukushima-kids-thyroid-cancer-jumps-17-december/

Everything is under control...

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

the problem is that by the time its scientifically proven it will be too late...

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

The news sources hardly ever mention that the new scanners used to check kids in Fukushima are so much more effective than the old method, checking by hand. Neither do they mention that the scanners were tested in other parts of Japan, and the kids had similar anomaly rates to kids in Fukushima. This should not be surprising, as the main Thyroid Cancer, the Papillary varity, is usually slow-growing. It can start in childhood, but not be detected by hand until adulthood. What is happeing in Fukushima is that the new scanners are picking up these slow-growing cancers early.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Heda: answer my question. Where are they being tested and why?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Smith,

They are being tested in Fukushima because of an accident at a nuclear power plant though I have no idea why you need to ask that question.

Now here's a question for you. Do you believe that if you test more and more stringently you will find more?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

" the government will take action against baseless rumours "

Indeed , deny and dismiss it all for as long as possible as baseless rumours , because once it becomes an accepted and undeniable fact the lawsuits from those pesky Fukushima evacuees will come flooding in. Surely the J govt. and N- village can' t have that. Just look at this coincidental headline from Mainichi news today - "Gov't, TEPCO determined to fight 'loss of homeland' lawsuits "

Btw, I still very clearly remember that most infamous " baseless" gem of all - " There is NO meltdown, let me repeat , there is no meltdown at Fukushima Dai ichi ". Anyone?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Smith,

The scanners were tested in Kofu, Nagasaki, and Hirosaki.

See here: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2013/03/31/national/thyroids-test-normal-in-fukushima/

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

For a variety of very good reasons, I tend to disagree with everything Heda Madness says about Fukushima and nuclear power, but even a stopped clock tells the right time twice a day.

Increased testing for thyroid cancer in Fukushima will lead to increased discovery of thyroid cancer in Fukushima. Basically, this is screening*, and there was no screening before. Fukushima was no different from anywhere else until 2011: children were not routinely tested for that disease. So it is undeniable that problems will now be found that would not otherwise have been found in an untested population: the already existing cases that would have been found if this kind of testing had been done before (but it wasn't, which is why they weren't found), plus the cases that are directly caused by the nuclear disaster at Fukushima Daiichi.

If we want to know what kind of increase in thyroid cancers in children and young adults could be attributed to the nuclear disaster - and I certainly do - we HAVE to have a point of comparison with a more geographically distant area, and ensure that the testing methods are comparable.

*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Screening_%28medicine%29

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Nice description on screening Wipeout. As I posted, the scanners were tested in geographically distant area, and found results comparable with Fukushima. This does suggest that the reported cases in Fukushima are from screening effects.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Heda: "Ah yes. The old, say something couldn't be because of Fukushima and you get voted down."

You're being voted down because you are dismissing the obvious. Why did I ask you where the tests were taking place? because you sorely need to admit the tests are needed because of the nuclear incident (not 'accident'). But hey, bud, go test across Japan and compare with the stats of Fukushima. Compare all the nose bleeds, which are quite real, as a certain mayor has proven, then suggest the NPPs should be restarted and there are no problems, etc. You're quite sad, really. And in a decade, when people from Fukushima are suffering 'weird' cancer effects and dying from said cancer, you'll be back on here saying it's merely coincidence.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

They are being tested in Fukushima because of an accident at a nuclear power plant though I have no idea why you need to ask that question.

There wasn't any nuclear accident, it is in fact a LEVEL 7 nuclear disaster caused by an earthquake and tsunami at an atomic power plant which was very lacking in safety standards and the culture of safety solely because TEPCO put profits over safety. The investigations since 3/11 have revealed that the same lack of safety standards and culture of safety is also lacking at many of the other atomic power plants, including the experimental Monju Fast Breeder.

Newly released documents show that 90% of the workforce, including senior managers at the No 1 Fukushima plant, fled the plant and the nuclear disaster of 3/11.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

zichi; "Newly released documents show that 90% of the workforce, including senior managers at the No 1 Fukushima plant, fled the plant and the nuclear disaster of 3/11."

Don't tell that to Heda! Oops, you just did! I guess I should say don't expect him to actually acknowledge it, given his fondness for the nuclear village.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

National rate for thyroid cancer in 10-14 year olds is 1-2 per million. Out of about 250,000 Fukushima children tested, there are 75 cases and about 33 confirmed cases of thyroid cancer. Whatever the pro nuclear people state, that rate is way above the national rate. At Chernobyl thyroid cancers didn't appear until about three years after the nuclear disaster.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Well then, that must be a very strange coïncidence...? (We shouldn't forget that "only the truth hurts...")

Surely you're not implying that the only possible cause for thyroid cancer is radiation from Fukushima? This article is missing a very basic piece of information (probably on purpose) - "How many cases of confirmed and suspected thyroid cancer have been discovered in each of the OTHER Japanese prefectures over the last three years?"

National rate for thyroid cancer in 10-14 year olds is 1-2 per million. Out of about 250,000 Fukushima children tested, there are 75 cases and about 33 confirmed cases of thyroid cancer.

So considering we're talking about a three-year span of monitoring, you're looking at a rate for 10-14 year olds of 3-6 per million. Now that you've helpfully quoted that rate, tell us what the rate is for ages 15-18 which was ALSO included in the 33 confirmed cases, then tell us what the rate is for newborns to age 9, which was ALSO included in the 33 confirmed cases. I think the "way above" statement will seem a bit extreme after you add those rates in, then adjust for three years of case accumulation.

Finally, the rate of thyroid cancer diagnosis is increasing WORLDWIDE - whether due to more aggressive screening or merely picking anything out of the ordinary on the thyroid gland and labeling it as cancer - and had been increasing even BEFORE 3/11. The rate is higher now than it was three years ago and Fukushima has nothing to do with it for the majority of the world. So why would Fukushima be expected to be immune to this global increase?

At Chernobyl thyroid cancers didn't appear until about three years after the nuclear disaster.

And the World health organization's summary states a major contributing cause:

This was further exacerbated by a general iodine deficiency in the local diet causing more of the radioactive iodine to be accumulated in the thyroid. Since radioactive iodine is short lived, if people had stopped giving locally supplied contaminated milk to children for a few months following the accident, it is likely that most of the increase in radiation-induced thyroid cancer would not have resulted.

Isn't nori naturally high in iodine? Japan is not Ukraine.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

You're quite sad, really

No, I'm not. EVERYTHING I post on Fukushima is supported by science and scientists. On the other hand, everything you post on Fukushima is because nuclear is bad m'kay. Now instead of personal incidents, why don't you go and read up on the subject and produce some links if you feel I'm wrong. Interesting that you seem to ignore that the more you test and the more stringently you will find something.

It's well known that people in Fukushima are suffering from stress and anxiety. Want to know one of the signs of stress? Nosebleeds. Now of course in your opinion it could only be caused by radiation. You constantly ask for international opinion because you can't believe the Japanese but then when the international experts say that it's not caused by radiation and it's unlikely that there will be many deaths caused by Fukushima you resort to personal attacks.

I think Famador and Star Viking have fully explained why these results seem to be high. It's interesting that again, they get marked down because it doesn't fit with the 'we're all going to die because of Fukushima policy' that you want to promote.

Wipeout, you may disagree with everything I say on nuclear, but as I said before, it's what the science community are saying (supported by the WHO and UN) and I do frequently post quotes/links attributed to them. I'm comfortable in my well researched stance.

Zichi - the fact that it was a level 7 doesn't change the facts that the local population suffered substantially less contamination than those in Chernobyl. That you accept that thyroid cancers from Chernobyl didn't appear till three years after yet seem to believe that this increase (despite all of the evidence posted by Star Viking and Famador) can only be from Fukushima is remarkable. Less radiation released. Less contamination. Less in the food, less food consumed = thyroid cancers forming at a faster rate than they did in Chernobyl.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

If the goverment is able to conduct comparable screenings among children in a region of Japan that was not affected by the disaster, it would at least establish whether or not the thyroid cancer spike in Fukushima is out of the ordinary.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

So considering we're talking about a three-year span of monitoring, you're looking at a rate for 10-14 year olds of 3-6 per million. Now that you've helpfully quoted that rate, tell us what the rate is for ages 15-18 which was ALSO included in the 33 confirmed cases, then tell us what the rate is for newborns to age 9, which was ALSO included in the 33 confirmed cases. I think the "way above" statement will seem a bit extreme after you add those rates in, then adjust for three years of case accumulation.

The age group 10-14 year olds is the group with the highest risk of thyroid cancer, and female have a greater risk than males. Tracking down figures is always difficult but the following link provides further figures.

http://nuclearhistory.wordpress.com/2014/03/27/thyroid-cancer-whole-of-japan-1975-2008/ http://www-pub.iaea.org/iaeameetings/cn224p/Session7/Jacob.pdf

The 50 cases are confirmed to be thyroid cancer, not lumps. The suspected cases that now would total 80 are normally set for biopsy tests to confirm or rule out cancer. This puts a new total of 130 in the confirmed or suspect cases yet the government insists there is no connection to the nuclear disaster. Thyroid cancer in children is usually extremely rare. -

http://globalresearchreport.com/2014/05/19/fukushima-thyroid-cancers-increase-again/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+globalresearchreport+(Global+Research+Report)#sthash.79IdTYm0.dpbs

Nevertheless, it notes a theoretical possibility that the risk of thyroid cancer among the group of children most exposed to radiation could increase and concludes that the situation needs to be followed closely and further assessed in the future. Thyroid cancer is a rare disease among young children, and their normal risk is very low. http://www.unis.unvienna.org/unis/en/pressrels/2014/unisous237.html

It's not only children.

Almost 2,000 Fukushima power plant workers, who assisted in containing the nuclear catastrophe at the Fukushima No. 1 plant, are at risk of thyroid cancer according to a health ministry team member. The 1,972 employees will be checked for lumps or be examined to see if they have cancer. http://voiceofrussia.com/2014_02_24/2-000-Fukushima-plant-workers-to-undergo-thyroid-cancer-screening-6747/

3 ( +4 / -1 )

What's most important is detecting thyroid cancers early because if found in the early stages it's almost always successfully treated. There might be reason for the higher than expected incidence of thyroid cancer among Fukushima's children. If you look for a problem, especially if you use an incredibly sensitive technique, which is what the Japanese are actually doing, you will find something.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

its a cartoon drawing man! who cares!

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@zichi

National rate for thyroid cancer in 10-14 year olds is 1-2 per million. Out of about 250,000 Fukushima children tested, there are 75 cases and about 33 confirmed cases of thyroid cancer. Whatever the pro nuclear people state, that rate is way above the national rate. At Chernobyl thyroid cancers didn't appear until about three years after the nuclear disaster.

The same number that is stated in this interview, which interprets things differently (I don't say whether it's right or wrong).

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/03/140313-fukushima-nuclear-accident-cancer-cluster-thyroid-chernobyl/

The thing is, I would prefer to know what's actually happening (and going to happen) rather than jumping to conclusions, especially if those conclusions sweep aside important qualifying factors, such as that increased monitoring inevitably results in increased discovery. This is an undeniable aspect of modern imaging techniques, which have improved almost more rapidly than we can keep up with, due to digitization and exponential increases in processing power. In 1980, some of this stuff was primitive compared to today, and in 1970 (in the case of MRI and CT) it barely existed, even on the drawing board.

If you do read up about cancer diagnosis - related in particular to screening - there is a lot of discussion about how to deal with the massive amount of data that is being gathered. It's not as easy as it would superficially seem. Catching cancers and precursors to cancer earlier and earlier is not actually an unmixed blessing. What with misdiagnosis, overdiagnosis, and the brutal and life-altering realities of most cancer treatments, there is a lot more to consider when getting tested than simply "find it, treat it, fix it, and the earlier the better". That brings us to why cancer screening is hotly debated, why recommendations can change over time, and why only two cancers (breast and prostate) tend to be the focus of national screening programmes, rather than having them for all of the common cancers. Obviously, cost and difficulty also play a part in that.

Everyone, on either side of the nuclear fence, should be wanting exactly the same thing: the fewer cancer cases caused by the Fukushima disaster, the better. The apparent rise in thyroid cases needs to be looked at, because we want to know whether it is directly as a result of the Daiichi meltdowns, partially as a result of them, or as a result of something else.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@wipeout

I had already read your linked article, along with many others. It would appear from the screenings and the released figures that since the 3/11 nuclear disaster there is an increase in thyroid cancer cases in Fukushima. No one can't state outright if those cancer cases are directly linked to the radiation released from the nuclear disaster site. This is true of most cancers caused by exposure to radiation unless say it involves say, a worker at a nuclear plant.

All of these 350,000 children will undergo decades of screening. Those who have thyroid cancer should also receive compensation but I don't know if any court would make an award.

The gov't and TEPCO underestimated and understated the amount of radiation released in the period following the 3/11 disasters.

It should be the concern of the medical and health people to try and discover why there's an increase in thyroid cancers. Even if the numbers are low when compared to the thyroid cancer cases at Chernobyl its still of concern to all the families having to deal with it.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

It would appear from the screenings and the released figures that since the 3/11 nuclear disaster there is an increase in thyroid cancer cases in Fukushima. No one can't state outright if those cancer cases are directly linked to the radiation released from the nuclear disaster site. This is true of most cancers caused by exposure to radiation unless say it involves say, a worker at a nuclear plant.

Agreed, but unless an area of Japan where the radiation from Fukushima isn't a factor can be monitored in the same way as the people in Fukushima, we are not going to find out if the apparent increase is specific to Fukushima or specific to testing 250,000 people very carefully indeed for signs of thyroid cancer.

There may be very good reasons why no other population is tested for comparison purposes - but without the information, we're in the dark, because we have failed to eliminate an alternative possibility (and quite a strong one, from what we already know about screening programmes).

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Wipeout

There may be very good reasons why no other population is tested for comparison purposes - but without the information, we're in the dark, because we have failed to eliminate an alternative possibility (and quite a strong one, from what we already know about screening programmes).

I'm not 100% sure but I think there were screenings in at least two other areas! Hokkaido and maybe in Kyushu. The lack of scanning machines and the health costs of a major screening are probably prohibitive. Who will pay for it all? In Fukushima the prefecture gov't is paying for the screening.

Posts like this one lack in too many details like where the thyroid cases came from, their age groups, the levels of radiation exposure.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I'm not 100% sure but I think there were screenings in at least two other areas! Hokkaido and maybe in Kyushu. The lack of scanning machines and the health costs of a major screening are probably prohibitive. Who will pay for it all?

True, which is why I say there may be good reasons for not doing it.

Like many medical issues, it's quite a bit more complicated than people tend to imagine. It is neither blindingly obvious that we can just insist on testing 100,000 or a million people from somewhere else - when we normally don't test people for thyroid cancer at all - nor blindingly obvious that an apparent rise in cases for a suddenly intensively tested population is due to the Fukushima disaster.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why would anyone trust a government that passes laws restricting what can be said about this mess? One that leaves an incompetent company in charge of the clean up? Gotta wonder. The Japanese government has been feeding its people and the world baloney right from day one.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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