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Possible Fernald health effects now include Lupus

Add lupus to the long list of potential medical problems facing people who lived near Fernald.

You've heard about the cancer claims, now a group of UC and Children's Hospital researchers, led by Pai-Yue Lu, say they've identified four times as many lupus cases as in the general population.

"We ended up finding 74 potential lupus cases and in the end we felt that 25 cases actually fit what our definition was for Lupus."

This is based on data from the Fernald Medical Monitoring Program that studied people living near the former uranium processing plant for 18 years. Edwa Yocum has lived in Crosby Township for 42 years. She's on a board that decides which researchers have access to the data.

"Hoping that with this information and other research projects that may come from using the medical monitoring data that this will also help other communities living around nuclear weapons sites or nuclear power plant sites."

Researchers stress they are unclear if the uranium caused the lupus or something else related to the industrial process. The information was presented this week at the American College of Rheumatology

Ann Thompson has decades of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market and brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting.