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Cell Phone Use Linked to Brain Cancer Risk

Nov 26, 2014

A new study has found that intensive use of cell phones can triple the user’s chances of developing certain types of brain cancer.

A group of Swedish doctors assessed the association between mobile phone use and brain cancer risk. Their study was published in the International Journal of Oncology. The researchers found that people who used wireless phones for more than a year were at 70 percent greater risk of brain cancer as compared to those who used wireless phones for a year or less, BusinessTech reports.

Those who had used wireless phones more than 25 years faced the greatest risk – 300 percent greater – than those who used wireless phones for a year or less. The total number of hours of wireless phone use is as important as the number of years of use, the researchers said. A quarter of the sample used wireless phones for 2,376 or more hours in their lifetime, which corresponds to about 40 minutes a day over ten years. Heavier users had a 250 percent greater risk of brain tumors compared to people who never used wireless phones or used them for less than 39 hours in their lifetime. The cancer risk relates to glioma – which has a 0.005 percent chance of being diagnosed. A tripled risk means that 15 out of 100,000 people would be diagnosed with glioma, according to BusinessTech.

The Swedish researchers concluded that “glioma and also acoustic neuroma are caused by RF-EMF emissions from wireless phones.” They say their result indicate that “current guidelines for exposure should be urgently revised,” according to BusinessTech. The researchers recommend minimizing exposure to cellular radiation by turning the phone off when not in use, and not sleeping with cellular devices next to the head.

Researchers and health organizations continue to debate the risks of cell phone radiation, but in 2011, the World Health Organization’s International Agency on Cancer classified this radiation as possibly carcinogenic.

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