participants was at least a factor of 10 lower (McRaney and McGahan, 1980). The dose from ingestion of contaminated food or water or inhalation of resuspended debris was also found to be insignificant. The highest possible dose is for a participant who was present throughout the entire operation and spent 8 h d−1 at the location of highest exposure rates. However, most troops were rotated, troops were billeted well away from contaminated areas, and the highest exposure rates occurred over an area of only about 0.1 km2. In examining a sample of 12 cases, the committee found that detailed calculations of worst-case upper-bound doses were carried out for most of the veterans, and the calculations included both internal and external doses. In those cases, the calculated upper bound was considerably less than the overall generic upper-bound value of 1 rem. The one exception was a person with a calculated upper-bound dose of 0.62 rem. At the other extreme, three veterans were given an upper-bound dose of zero because they did not have an opportunity to be close to contaminated sites (for example, they remained on board a ship in the Nagasaki harbor). In one case, the veteran was in a different part of Japan.

The committee concurs with the assessment by the NTPR program that the dose to even the most exposed of the occupation troops in Japan from both internal and external exposure was probably well below 1 rem.


As stated in Section II.A, dose reconstruction is an inexact science. Uncertainties in quantifying dose arise from uncertainties in the various components that must be brought together to calculate a dose: in reconstruction of the activity scenario, in characterization of the radiation environment through time and space, in parameters assumed for calculations (such as resuspension factors and decay factors for radiation fields), in characterization of the mixture of radionuclides produced by a particular detonation, and in quantifying exposures through various routes (such as inhalation, ingestion, and dermal exposure).

Clearly, uncertainties in the dose assigned to an atomic veteran are highly relevant to the adjudication process, particularly for diseases not categorized as “presumptive,” that is, diseases whose probability of causation is evaluated, because those uncertainties can inform the decision regarding the merits of a claim for service-connected disability. According to 32 CFR 218.3, which describes the approach to dose reconstruction used in the NTPR program: “Due to the range of activities, times, geometries, shielding, and weapon characteristics, as well as the normal spread in the available data pertaining to the radiation environment, an uncertainty analysis is performed. This analysis quantifies the uncertainties due to time/space variations, group size, and available data. Due to the large amounts of data, an automated (computer-assisted) procedure is often used to facilitate the

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