Radon Gas vs Radon Decay Products

Radon is a Class A Carcinogen but it is not the gas itself that poses the greatest health risk.  Radon decays into short-lived, radioactive particles called Radon Decay Products (RDPs). This is called Ionizing Radiation. 

The RDPs that cause lung cancer are:

  • Polonium-218
  • Lead-214
  • Bismuth-214
  • Polonium-214

Latency Effect of Damage to Lung Tissue:

  • Once inhaled, Radon Decay Products damage the lung tissue called bronchial epithelium.
  • The latency period for this damage to the DNA can be up to 25 years.
    • In other words, from the time the RDPs damage the lung tissue, it can be up to 25 years before the symptoms appear.
  • This is why we don’t see a lot of CHILDREN diagnosed with lung cancer.