Monday, May 30, 2011

Cell phone long term safety questioned by CNN AC360 report

AC360 and Sanjay Gupta tonight aired an unsettling report on cell phone safety and the possibility of brain tumors many years down the road, especially for minors, whose brain cells divide more quickly.

Microwave radiation from cell phones is “non ionizing”. But even manufacturers recommend using devices that keep the phone about an inch away from your ear. But no one does this. It’s a little more dangerous when you have a poor signal; your phone compensates by emitting more radiation to communicate with cell towers.

The report mentioned a study that apparently showed no risk, but had a footnote showing increased glioma in people who had used cell phones for more than ten years.

I did not use cell phones much until about 2002, when I used a small USWest phone. I had an analogue cell phone for a while in the late 90s that was clumsy to use.

Bluetooth devices are not in as great a contact with the ear and don’t present as much exposure.

One surgeon said that parents should not allow their kids to use cell phones because of the increase risk of cancer by age 50.

The World Health Organization's statement from the International Agency for Research on Cancer is "IARC classified Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields as Possibly Carcinogenic for Humans", link (website url) here. The major news media made a big story about this May 31.  They talked about using speaker phones or extensions. 

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