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WHO: Cell Phones Possibly Cause Cancer

WHO: Cell Phones Possibly Cause Cancer

Using a cell phone can possibly increase the risk of certain types of brain cancer in humans, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced today. They have listed mobile phone use in the same “carcinogenic hazard” category as lead, engine exhaust and chloroform.

According to a report from CNN, a team of 31 scientists from 14 countries, including the United States, made the decision after reviewing peer-reviewed studies on cell phone safety. The team found enough evidence to categorize personal exposure as “possibly carcinogenic to humans.”

Although long-term studies haven’t been conducted to make a clear conclusion, enough data exists to show enough of a connection that consumers should be alerted.

“The biggest problem we have is that we know most environmental factors take several decades of exposure before we really see the consequences,” said Dr. Keith Black, chairman of neurology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

The radiation emitted from a cell phone is not like an X-ray, but similar to a very low-power microwave oven. ”What microwave radiation does in most simplistic terms is similar to what happens to food in microwaves, essentially cooking the brain. So in addition to leading to a development of cancer and tumors, there could be a whole host of other effects like cognitive memory function, since the memory temporal lobes are where we hold our cell phones.”

The European Environmental Agency is asking for more studies, and for now says that cell phones could be as big a public health risk as smoking, asbestos and leaded gasoline.



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Melissa Breyer

Melissa Breyer is a writer and editor with a background in sustainable living, specializing in food, science and design. She is the co-author of True Food (National Geographic) and has edited and written for regional and international books and periodicals, including The New York Times Magazine. Melissa lives in Brooklyn, NY.


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1:08AM PDT on Sep 13, 2012

thanks for sharing

1:59AM PDT on May 11, 2012

thanks for sharing

8:48AM PDT on Apr 27, 2012

helpful info.

10:17PM PST on Mar 7, 2012

Very concerning especially when kids are using cell phones at very young ages.

7:42PM PST on Dec 15, 2011

I am an old woman; I have lived through many scares. Grilled food caused cancer, cranberries caused cancer, microwaves caused cancer, cigarettes cause cancer, fake sugar causes cancer, and etc, etc, etc. These warnings generally turn out to be ridiculous; but occasionally they are right. (Example, cigarettes cause cancer) So what do we do? We use moderation and pray a lot.

6:51PM PST on Dec 14, 2011

what about microwave ovens?

12:26AM PDT on Aug 9, 2011

Cell phones make life easier, but they shouldn't be overused.

8:52AM PDT on Aug 8, 2011

In the meantime, let's carry on using our brain CELL phones eh? nutting to wooooorrrryyyy

8:50PM PDT on Aug 6, 2011

noted more research is needed

2:15AM PDT on Jun 26, 2011

That's why I don't own a mobile phone.
Oh,and mobile phones apparently kill bees. I like bees. I don't want to become a mass murderer.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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people are talking

I have severe arthritis...and learned a great deal from this article -- thanks.

Thanks Diana. Good advice.

Great awareness article, thanks!


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