Joel Moskowitz comments on Simon Chapman’s mobile phone ‘all-clear study.
Joel’s comments, 14 May 2016: This study seems designed to serve as propaganda for the public debate about whether cell phone radiation is a cancer risk factor. The study’s lead author, Simon Chapman, published an opinion piece online (see below) in which he accused Devra Davis of being an “alarmist” for her position in this debate.
Yesterday, Medscape, a website that “offers specialists, primary care physicians, and other health professionals the Web’s most robust and integrated medical information and educational tools,” published a story about the study. The article cited Simon Chapman and John Boice, Jr. who supported the study’s conclusions, and Lennart Hardell who raised concerns. Since I have concerns about the study and do not believe the Medscape article was balanced, I sent Medscape my comments. See the Medscape article which appears below along with my comments in red (BOLD in this posting).
I strongly encourage scientists with expertise on EMF health effects to share their knowledge about the science with reporters. In my experience over the past seven years, most reporters are trying to write an accurate story. I realize that it is often inconvenient to talk to them, but it is the only way we can overcome the ignorance and bias promoted by scientists who have a vested interest in protecting the status quo.
SNIP (The Chapman paper as copied in the Moskowith posting is omitted here)
Following is a story about the study that appeared in Medscape. My comments appear in red.(Bold here) I sent my comments to the author of the article and the editor-in-chief of Medscape. The article is copyrighted so do not post it on the internet.
Study: No Link Between Brain Tumors, Cell Phones; Expert: But…
Roxanne Nelson, Medscape, May 12, 2016
A large study has found no link between cell-phone use and brain tumors, although this is undoubtedly not the last word on the controversial subject.
This statement is misleading: 1) this Australian study only examined malignant brain tumors (i.e., brain cancer); non-malignant brain tumors are more common; 2) the study had no measure of actual cell phone use; it relied on the industry reports of the number of cell phone subscriptions over time; 3) the study found a large increase in brain cancer rates among men and women 70-84 years of age as well as a small, but statistically significant increase, in brain cancer among all men (age-standardized) during a period when there was rapid adoption of cell phones in the population.
In fact, according to one expert, the analysis lumped together all brain cancers and did not separate out high-grade gliomas (especially in the temporal or frontal lobe), which are the most relevant type.
Excellent point. Brain cancer (glioma) incidence increased in the frontal and temporal lobes over time in England. Also, the incidence of high-grade gliomas (i.e., glioblastoma multiforme) in these two lobes has increased over time in the U.S. The current study did not examine types of brain cancer or location of tumors.
In their study, the researchers examined age- and sex-specific incidence rates in 19,858 men and 14,222 women diagnosed with brain cancer in Australia from 1982 to 2012.
The findings show that the incidence of brain cancer did not increase during the study period in any group except those 70 to 84 years of age.