Community water fluoridation appears to have no association with increased risk of hip fracture, myocardial infarction or osteosarcoma.
That’s the conclusion from a new Swedish study. And these conclusions agree with most findings from earlier studies.
Peggy Näsman describes this new study in her PhD thesis:
She used Swedish nationwide population-based registers for her investigations.
Sweden does not use community water fluoridation but its drinking water contains fluoride at various levels, including optimum or even higher concentrations. So Swedish population data are ideal for looking at possible links between the level of fluoride intake and specific health effects.
Näsman found no association between fluoride exposure level and risk of hip fracture using a cohort of 452,824 eligible people with an exposure to the same drinking water source from birth. The drinking water fluoride levels ranged between <0.1 and 2.7 mg/L . Similarly, she found no association between fluoride level and the risk of osteoporotic (low-trauma) hip fracture.
However, stratified analyses suggested that fluoride exposure in people younger than 80 years of age was, in fact, associated with a decreased risk for hip fracture.
There was also no association between fluoride exposure level and risk of myocardial infarction using a cohort of 455,619 eligible people with an exposure to the same drinking water source from birth. The drinking water fluoride levels ranged between <0.1 and 2.7 mg/L . There was also no association with fatal and non-fatal myocardial infarction.
Finally, Näsman found no association between drinking water fluoride exposure and risk of osteosarcoma using a case-control study consisting of 363 eligible osteosarcoma cases identified in the Swedish Cancer Register, and 1,815 control subjects randomly selected from the Total Population Register. Here the drinking water fluoride levels ranged between 0.03 and 2.75 mg/L.
Anti-fluoridation campaigners often cite cherry-picked studies based on unreliable work or small numbers of subjects to argue that community water fluoridation is harmful. They have specifically claimed fluoridation causes increased risks of hip fracture,myocardial infarction, and osteosarcoma. However, the bulk of the scientific literature does not support these claims and this study once again confirms that.
Näsman is publishing her findings in three scientific publications:
Näsman P, Ekstrand J, Granath F, Ekbom A, Fored CM. Estimated drinking water fluoride exposure and risk of hip fracture: a cohort study. J Dent Res. 2013 92(11):1029-34.
Näsman P, Granath F, Ekstrand J, Ekbom A, Sandborgh-Englund G, Fored CM. Natural fluoride in drinking water and myocardial infarction: a cohort study in Sweden. Science of the Total Environment. 2016 562:305-11.
Näsman P, Granath F, Ekstrand J, Ekbom A, Sandborgh Englund G, Naimi- Akbar A, Fored CM. Natural fluoride in drinking water and osteosarcoma: a case-control study in Sweden. [Submitted]