Highlights of Noteworthy Decisions

Decision 364 13
E. Smith
  • Cancer (prostate)
  • Exposure (cadmium)
  • Welding

The worker was a welder from 1971 until he retired in 2000 at age 57. He was diagnosed with prostate cancer at age 62. The worker appealed a decision of the Appeals Resolution Officer denying entitlement for the prostate cancer.

The Vice-Chair accepted the opinion of a Tribunal medical assessor that workplace exposure did not cause the worker's prostate cancer. The Vice-Chair noted that the assessor's opinion was based on current epidemiology. There was insufficient evidence to support cadmium as a risk factor for development of prostate cancer. The most significant factor that likely played a role in the development of the worker's prostate cancer was his age of 62. The probability of being diagnosed with prostate cancer for men age 60 to 69 is one in 15.
The worker referred to Decision No. 1507/11, in which a welder was granted entitlement for prostate cancer. However, the Vice-Chair noted that the worker in that case was only 57, at which age the probability for being diagnosed with prostate cancer was one in 37. The Vice-Chair also noted that Decision No. 1507/11 referred to the uncertainty in the epidemiological evidence and specifically stated that the decision was based on individual factors present in the case.
The appeal was dismissed.