2006_6_health_crab.jpgAs if the vivid memories of 9/11 weren’t enough, heroes who worked to save others that day are now finding themselves with another souvenir of the occasion: cancer. The New York Post reports today that since the attacks, 283 World Trade Center rescue workers have come down with tumors with 33 dying as a result. Doctors feel that this may be the result of benzene exposure at the site – a prime ingredient leaked from the burning jet fuel escaping from the planes.

Some of the more common cancers were of the blood-cell variety, such as leukemia, lymphoma, myeloma, and Hodgkin’s Disease. And since most of the sufferers are on the young end of things (around age 40 or so – a demographic among whom cancers like this are fairly rare), occupational exposure from Ground Zero is held as the likely cause. Other cancers reported among rescue workers include tumors of the tongue, throat, testicles, breast, bladder, kidney, colon, lung, and brain.