Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Autopsy Links Policeman Death to Sept. 11

"The death of a 34-year-old police detective who developed respiratory disease after working at ground zero is 'directly related' to Sept. 11, 2001, a New Jersey coroner said in the first known ruling positively linking a death to cleanup work at the World Trade Center site.

James Zadroga's family and union released his autopsy results Tuesday, saying they were proof of the first death of a city police officer related to recovery work after the terrorist attacks.

'It is felt with a reasonable degree of medical certainty that the cause of death in this case was directly related to the 9/11 incident,' wrote Gerard Breton, a pathologist at the Ocean County (N.J.) medical examiner's office in the Feb. 28 autopsy.

Zadroga died on Jan. 6 of respiratory failure and had inflammation in his lung tissue due to 'a history of exposure to toxic fumes and dust,' Breton wrote."

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