Water fluoridation, cancer, 'funky teeth'

Posted: Sunday, September 23, 2007

The article in My Turn: "Fluoride beneficial, despite distorted arguments" has some distortions itself.

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Surgeon General can hardly reverse course after 60-plus years without heads rolling.

Environmental Protection Agency unions have pressed the agency to limit fluoride since the 1990s. In August 2005 in a letter to EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson, 11 unions representing more than 7,000 workers at the EPA called for a national moratorium on programs to add fluoride to drinking water, citing what they call a possible cancer risk.

A study finally was published in the May 2006 issue of Cancer Causes and Control. This is a peer-reviewed publication. This was in communities where fluoride was added, not naturally occurring levels of fluoride that are several times higher than the amount added to municipal water supplies.

In 2005 the CDC said that the fluorosis rate is 32 percent. Of that, 2.45 percent is moderate to severe. That is 7 million people with funky teeth.

The National Research Council panel showed lowered thyroid function at dosages as low as 0.01 mg/kg a day, that is one part per million for a 220 pound person. As water intake is random and intake cannot be controlled, all of these studies become relevant for water consumption at 1 ppm.

The relevance of the report is where is the safety factor between 1 pm and the less than 2 ppm, the NRC panel suggests.

But surely, the letter writer knows that endorsements are not science, and "the scientific community is near unanimous in endorsing fluoride."

Wayne Logbeck

Hutchinson, Kan.

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