Cell Phone Brain Tumor Risk Underestimated in Cell Phone Study

A group of Swedish researchers are calling for more study into the connection between cell phone use and gliomas, said Medical News Today. A <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/practice_areas/diseases">glioma is a rare and generally fatal type of brain tumor.

Dr. Lennart Hardell and team—from the University Hospital, Orebro, Sweden, wrote, in a letter to the editor of the International Journal of Epidemiology earlier this month regarding the “Re-analysis of risk for glioma in relation to mobile telephone use: comparison with the results of the Interphone international case-control study.” The team confirmed that an Interphone study published in May 2010 underestimated brain tumor risks due to a design flaw in the study, said Medical News Today.

The team’s research on brain tumors, published in 2006, indicated that risks for developing brain cancer from digital cell phones over a ten year period increased by 180 percent; however, the Interphone study only indicated a 118-percent increased risk, said Medical News Today. Up until now, the discrepancy was not explained and risks revealed in the Interphone study were minimized.

Hardell’s team reanalyzed its data utilizing the Interphone’s more limited protocols, such as a smaller participant group said Medical News Today. Interphone looked at subjects 30 to 59 years of age, while the original Hardell team study looked that the 20-to-80-year-old demographic and considered participants using cordless phones as “unexposed,” noted Medical News Today. Making the two changes led to results that were statistically the same as the Interphone study, which means that the reduced risk of gliomas from use of cell phones in the Interphone study was due to its study design flaws, explained Medical News Today.

For instance had the Interphone study used a broader study group and had the participants been appropriately label as “exposed” to microwave radiation if using portable phones releasing microwave radiation, as cordless telephones do, the brain tumor risk would have been at 180 percent, as it was in the research conducted originally by the Hardell team, added Medical News Today.

Of note, the Hardell reanalysis was independently funded while the Interphone study was industry funded; the Hardell study confirms that cell phones cause brain tumors, said Medical News Today.

The reanalysis also confirmed that a meta-analysis of 23 case-control studies on mobile phones and tumors of the brain, eye, testicles, and salivary glands, and nonHodgkin’s lymphoma, which involved 37,916 participants, found serious risk of tumors, as did the Hardell studies, said Medical News Today. The new analysis also found that poorer quality research provided flawed, misrepresented results, such as revealed in the Interphone study.

The new study also revealed how scientific data can be adjusted to suit industry and calls for public release of the Interphone study data so that independent scientists can take a closer look at the true impact of cell phones on the brain, added Medical News Today.

Countless studies have been conducted on the links between cell phone use and cancer, with seemingly conflicting results. Recently, author Devra Davis, a U.S. public health advocate and epidemiologist, wrote about the science surrounding cell phones in her new book, Disconnect. The book reveals that, although the published science is conflicted, there is information pointing to the dangers of cell phones.

A variety of studies, wrote the Globe and Mail previously, specifically citing a large review released this year by the World Health Organization’s (WHO) cancer-research agency, revealed that people using cell phones for just a half-hour daily for 10 years experience a two-fold risk for glioma. Gliomas were found on the same side of the brain as where the cell phones were held.

In 2008, we wrote that the head of one of the country’s top cancer centers warned his staff that cell phones could be dangerous to their health. Dr. Ronald B. Herberman, the director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute and UPMC Cancer Centers, issued an internal advisory memo to about 3,000 faculty and staff members advising them to take precautions to avoid the possible cancer risks of cell phones.

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