Community water fluoridation is not associated with increased risk of osteosarcoma, a US study has found.
More than sixty percent of the US population have access to community water fluoridation, considered to be one of the most important public health policies of the twentieth century due to its reduction of tooth decay at the population level. Fluoride ingestion has been suggested as a possible risk factor for osteosarcoma based on a 1990 animal study. Six of the seven subsequent case-control studies in humans reported that fluoride in drinking water was not associated with osteosarcoma.
This study—published in the Journal of Dental Research—assessed whether living in a fluoridated community was a risk factor for osteosarcoma by performing a secondary data analysis using data collected from two separate, but linked studies.
“These results indicate that residence in a fluoridated community is not related to an increase in risk for osteosarcoma after adjusting for race, ethnicity, income, distance from the hospital, urban/rural living status, and drinking bottled water,” said Chester Douglass, Harvard School of Dental Medicine, Department of Oral Health Policy and Epidemiology.
“This should not be surprising given that ingestion of fluoridated water is a common exposure and osteosarcoma remains a rare disease.”