News by Dan Seifert on Thursday July 14, 2011.
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Another study has been released that finds no link between cellphone use and brain tumor development. The study, which was conducted in Denmark, looked at data from 2.8 million adults who had been using cellphones for at least 11 years.
The researchers were looking to see if there was a link between cellphone use and the development of acoustic neuromas, or vestibular schwannomas, a non-cancerous tumor that forms on the main nerve running from the ear to the brain. Most of the symptoms related to acoustic neuromas are dizziness, ringing in the ears, and trouble balancing, though in rare cases the tumor can grow large enough to press against the brain and become life threatening. One would assume that a tumor of this sort might develop on the side of the head where a user holds their phone up, were there a link between cellphone use and brain tumor growth.
However, according to the data collected by the scientists in the study, that is not the case. Of the 2.8 million adults studied, only 800 developed acoustic neuromas, and those that had used cellphones for the longest amount of time did not have larger than expected tumors, or have a propensity to grow the tumor on the right side of the head, where most users hold their cellphones.
The scientist did hedge their findings with the statement that it could be they do not have a long enough period of time to look at, as acoustic neuromas are very slow-growing, and can take a number of years to develop and exhibit symptoms. "As most cellphone users started their use only from the early 1990s onwards, we have only up to 15 years of observation time of larger numbers of users -- which is perhaps too short to see an effect, if there is any," said Dr. Joachim Schuz of the World Health Organization who led the study.
The debate over whether cellphone radiation is harmful to humans or not will likely continue to go on for some time, as these studies can never prove cause and effect - they can only show a possible correlation. Though many researchers feel that cellphones are not powerful enough to cause cancer, the concern is still there for many people. [via Reuters]
Dan is MobileBurn.com's Editor-in-Chief. Based in Poughkeepsie in New York, Dan can be found on Twitter as @DCSeifert.