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What Are the Most Common 9/11 Cancers?

March 14, 2024 | Michael Barasch

Anyone exposed to toxins on or after 9/11 at Ground Zero in Lower Manhattan, the Pentagon, or the Flight 93 crash site in Shanksville, Pennsylvania has an increased risk of developing 69 different types of cancer.

The most common cancers for 9/11 responders and survivors are skin cancer, including melanoma, breast cancer, and prostate cancer.

Barasch & McGarry represents more than 40,000 members of the 9/11 community, among them more than 10,000 with skin cancer, nearly 2,500 with breast cancer, and at least 5,000 with prostate cancer.

Other common 9/11 cancers include thyroid cancer, multiple myeloma, lymphoma, leukemia, lung cancer, kidney cancer, colon cancer, and bladder cancer.

Within days of 9/11, the Environmental Protection Agency claimed the air near Ground Zero was safe to breathe.

As a result, responders were not provided with adequate protective equipment, and office workers, students and teachers, and residents returned to Lower Manhattan.

But later medical research found the air at Ground Zero was toxic – it contained cement dust and particles, asbestos, and chemicals called persistent organic pollutants, many of them known carcinogens.

If you were there, protect yourself. Speak with your primary health care provider about your cancer risk and stay current on all recommended diagnostic tests.

If you are diagnosed with any 9/11-related cancer, Barasch & McGarry can help you access resources through the free World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program and the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF)

The health program provides comprehensive medical care to 9/11 victims for their 9/11-related illnesses.

The victim fund offers tax-free awards for pain and suffering, lost earnings, and benefits for surviving spouses and family members.

For the WTC Health Program, the exposure zone consists of all of Manhattan below Houston Street and parts of Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO in Brooklyn.

For the 9/11 VCF, the exposure zone includes the area of Manhattan south of Canal Street and west of Clinton Street.

Early detection could save your life.

Barasch & McGarry can help you register with the 9/11 VCF. Please contact us by visiting or calling 212-385-8000.

If you prefer to register or enroll directly with the 9/11 VCF or the WTC Health Program, visit or

Barasch & McGarry, Lawyers for the 9/11 Community, represents more than 40,000 members of the 9/11 community.


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