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Cellphone Use And Cancer Linked, Some Experts Say

Jacob Chung |
May 31, 2011 | 12:35 p.m. PDT

Senior Tech Editor

Brain cancer linked with cellphone usage? Some experts say it's possible.
Brain cancer linked with cellphone usage? Some experts say it's possible.
With the exponential growth of cell phone users in the last decade, there's a reasonable concern being circulated: can my phone give me cancer? The answer according to some experts, is maybe. 

In Lyon, France during a meeting of the World Health Organization Tuesday, experts determined that prolonged cellphone usage may cause glioma, a rare but potentially fatal form of brain cancer. The conclusion was formed after reviewing data from a recent study of cancer patients who reported high levels of cellphone usage.  

According to the World Health Organization, the electromagnetic radiation emitted from cellphones are classified under category 2B along with substances like certain pesticides and exhaust from gas engines. The studies are far from conclusive. 

Some experts in the field argue that the results from the studies are not sufficient to make a clear case. 

AP reports: 

The study was controversial because it began with people who already had cancer and asked them to recall how often they used their cellphones more than a decade ago.

In about 30 other studies done in Europe, New Zealand and the U.S., patients with brain tumors have not reported using their cellphones more often than unaffected people.

Further reported:

Cellphones send signals to nearby towers via radio frequency waves, a form of energy similar to FM radio waves and microwaves. But the radiation produced by cellphones cannot directly damage DNA and is different from stronger types of radiation like X-rays or ultraviolet light. At very high levels, radio frequency waves from cellphones can heat up body tissue, but that is not believed to damage human cells.

Read more here

Despite the data available, experts say that more studies will have to be done as cancerous tumors typically take several years to develop. 

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