Use Of Cellphones Linked With Brain Cancer In Massive Study

Use Of Cellphones Linked With Brain Cancer In Massive Study

Posted: 11/12/2014 4:05 pm EST Updated: 11/12/2014 4:59 pm EST


This is NOT good news about cellphone use and brain cancer | Ridofranz via Getty Images

 A new study out of Sweden indicates that talking on cellphones and even cordless phones can be related to a certain form of brain cancer.

The study, published in the journal Pathophysiology in October, analyzed the results of 1,498 cases of people with malignant brain tumours and 3,530 controls to determine whether phone use had any effect on their cancer.

In their findings, it appeared that the longer a person used a cell or cordless phone, the more likely they were to get become gliomas, a type of tumour found in the brain or spinal cord that is malignant in 80 per cent of cases, according to WebMD.

“The risk is three times higher after 25 years of use. We can see this clearly,” the study’s lead researcher, Dr. Lennart Hardell, told Reuters.

Those who had only been using a cell or cordless phone for less than a year were at the least amount of risk, while those who used their phone on the same side of the body (or “ipsilaterally”) for many years had the highest odds for brain cancer.

The cause for concern with cellphones comes from the radiofrequency energy, a type of electromagnetic radiation emitted by the phones, explains the National Cancer Institute. These waves can then be absorbed by the tissues of the brain, and it is not yet understood how this may or may not affect the development of cancer.

Dr. Gabriel Zada, a neurosurgeon in California, noted to Reuters that children could be particularly at risk due to having smaller heads, thinner skulls and higher brain conductivity.

Earlier this year, a study from France found similar results about cellphone use and glioma, though the results in that study showed tumours developing on the opposite side of the brain, reported The Atlantic’s The Wire.

As of October, the International Agency for Research on Cancer has classified cellphones as “possibly carcinogenic,” according to the World Health Organization, which is planning for a further study into health outcomes from phones by 2016.


How To Reduce Exposure To Radiation

1 of 11

Keep the phone away from your head
A Bluetooth headset is one of the best ways to reduce exposure, as it allows the user to keep the source of radiation at a distance. Although this advice is often heard, it is seldom followed. If you find it tedious to use a Bluetooth headset all the time, try at least to use it on longer calls as well as during dial-up and the first few seconds of a call, when the phone is emitting its highest level of radiation.
It is also a good idea to avoid keeping the mobile phone turned on all night and sitting on the nightstand next to your pillow.


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