Main Article Content
Malignant mesothelioma (MM), a rare and very deadly tumour, can be due to asbestos exposure. To better understand the cause of incidence of MM, spatial autocorrelation analysis with reference to the quantity of asbestos-cement products in use and the localisation of former asbestos manufacturing plants was applied. Geostatistical analysis shows that strong spatial clustering of MM incidence (referring to the general population as well as females and males separately) during the period 1999-2013 in the administrative units of Poland (provinces and counties). Incidence hotspots were found to be concentrated primarily in southern Poland but also seen in the county of Szczecin, which stands out in local autocorrelation analysis in north-western Poland. High incidence rates were discovered, in particular with reference to counties around former plants manufacturing asbestos-containing products, mainly asbestos-cement manufacturers. The highest frequency of MM incidence rate was found in within a 55 km radius of plants in or near the towns Trzebinia, Ogrodzieniec and Szczucin in the South, where asbestos-cement products had been manufactured for close to 40 years. Areas with significantly high incidence rates were also discovered in the provinces of Śląskie, Małopolskie and Świętokrzyskie in southern Poland.