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Cell phones and cancer

April 19, 2015 - Cell phones and cancer risk has been controversially debated for over decades. But according to a recent study by some researchers of the University of Bordeaux, in France, there is an increased risk of cell phones and brain cancer for heavy users. Among potential malignant tumors users may develop include glioma, a type of brain cancer particularly aggressive. The risk to have glial tumor can be doubled among intensive users of mobile phones. This study confirms suspicious of the devastating impact of mobile phones on human health. 


Cancer connection with radiofrequency electromagnetic fields in humans remains controversial. To shed more light, numerous studies are unceasingly conducted in different countries. This control study was conducted by Dr. Gaëlle Coureau and his colleagues at Bordeaux Segalen University (French: Université Bordeaux Segalen), and Published for the first time on 9 May 2014 in the journal Occupational & Environmental Medicine. The results show that the intensive use of a cell phone is more often found among patients that had brain cancer, glioma, or a less significant brain tumor called meningioma; it is the most common type of brain tumor but tends to be less aggressive than glioma. 

 

The objective of the study, called "Cerenat", was to analyze the connection between the use of cell phones and brain cancer risk, mainly the development of glioma and meningioma in adults; although there also studies on cell phones and breast cancer (and others), no conclusive finds have been released yet. During the research, the researchers distinguish these two types of tumors. Glioma is generally more dreadful, and it develops in the brain, often quite quickly. Conversely, meningioma is generally less aggressive and it is, in principle, easier to be surgically removed, given it arises from the lining of the brain.  


The study includes benign or malignant brain tumors that occurred between June 2004 and May 2006 in people over 15 years. The Bordeaux researchers analyzed the profile of patients who constantly used mobile phones in four French departments (counties): Gironde, Calvados, Manche and Hérault. They then compared these profiles with the residents of these departments (the same age, same sex) who also using mobile phones but have not had a brain tumor.  It was found a significant probability that those with brain cancer had increased their risk of the disease due to their past habit of mobile phone use compared to those who did not have cancer.  

 

"It's a very solid methodological study," said Prof. Gérard Lasfargues, Scientific Assistant Director General of ANSES; “it confirms what was said the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) and ANSES (Spanish: Administración Nacional de la Seguridad Social; English: National Social Security Administration)".  

 

How to Reduce Cell Phone Exposure Cancer


Fortunately glioma and meningioma are rare. According to the Cancer Brain Tumor Registry of the United States (CBTRUS), primary brain tumors (glioma, meningioma, and all others) represent only 2% of all cancers. In fact, for people who were born before 1950, the risk of suffering from these cancers before age 75 is about 0.66% for men and 0.43% for women. But regardless of low risk, each individual needs to reduce his risk, as much as he can.  


The first and most effective step to take is to reduce regular or constant cell phone exposure, particularly in heavy users and children. Use mobile phones only when it is necessary. People are also recommended to use a headset (wired), or keep the device away from their head when the wave emissions are highest: especially in seconds after dialing, and whenever there is one or two bars. Also to reduce your cell phone and cancer risk, avoid using cell phones in areas where reception is poor: underground parking, elevators, enclosed places, and others.  

 

Before purchasing, buyers need to focus on phones with SAR (specific absorption rate) as small as possible. For instance, some mobile phones have a SAR well below 1 W / kg". The FCC limit for public exposure from cellular telephones is an SAR level of 1.6 watts per kilogram (1.6 W/kg).  

 

 

 

References: 

  1. Cushing H. The meningioma (dural endotheliomas): Their source and favored seats of origin. Brain. 1922, 45: 282-316. 
  2. Kleihues P, Cavenee WB (eds): World Health Organization Classification of Tumors: Pathology and Genetics: Tumors of the nervous system. Lyon, France: IARC Press, 2000. 
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  4. Harada T, Irving RM, Xuereb JH, et al: Molecular genetic investigation of the neurofibromatosis type 2 tumor suppressor gene in sporadic meningioma. J Neurosurg. 1996, 84: 847-851. 
  5. Mack EE, Wilson CB. Meningiomas induced by high-dose cranial irradiation. J Neurosurg. 1993, 79: 28-31. 
  6. Harrison MJ, Wolfe DE, Lau TS, et al: Radiation-induced meningiomas: Experience at the Mount Sinai Hospital and review of the literature. J Neurosurg. 1991, 75: 564-574. 
  7. Annegers JF, Laws ER Jr, Kurland LT, Grabow JD. Head trauma and subsequent brain tumors. Neurosurgery. 1979, 4: 203-206.
  8. Mobile phone use and brain tumors in the CERENAT case-control study: Occup Environ Med doi:10.1136/oemed-2013-101754