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This article will answer two important questions:
My research on this issue confirms the conclusions of the National Cancer Institute:
Here's a statement from the FCC, Federal Communications Commission, about RF Waves:
"Ionization" is a process by which electrons are stripped from atoms and molecules. This process can produce molecular changes that can lead to damage in biological tissue, including effects on DNA, the genetic material of living organisms. This [Ionization] process requires interaction with high levels of electromagnetic energy. Those types of electromagnetic radiation with enough energy to ionize biological material include X-radiation and gamma radiation. Therefore, X-rays and gamma rays are examples of ionizing radiation."
"The energy levels associated with RF and microwave radiation, on the other hand, are not great enough to cause the ionization of atoms and molecules, and RF energy is, therefore, a type of non-ionizing radiation. Other types of non-ionizing radiation include visible and infrared light."
I know someone who has Cancer and she is convinced that holding her Cell Phone to the side of her head was the cause of it; her particular Cancer is located in her salivary glands. She came to this conclusion by correlation. She reasons:
"I have Cancer in about the same area . . . that I hold my Cell Phone."
Truth is, any person who contracts any form of Cancer in the head area, might correlate that Cancer to using a Cell Phone. Chances are, MOST people who suffer from Cancer also use Cell Phones — this is a Correlation — and does not establish Causation.
Let me explain something called the "Correlation-Causation Fallacy" — Events X and Y both happen at the same time. Therefore, it is assumed that X caused Y (or that Y caused X), because events of type X accompany events of type Y. Here's an example of the Correlation-Causation Fallacy:
Bigger shoe sizes correlate to better handwriting.
Two Burning Questions pertaining to the Cell Phone/Cancer Issue are:
1 - Is there any evidence that Cell Phones usage even correlates with Cancer in the first place?
By December 2008, about 271 million American use cellular phone, among a total population of 306 million. This means 3 out of 4 people (75%) use Cell Phones in the U.S.A. Hence, Cell Phones are an easy target for "correlation" conclusions like:
Cancer of the Tongue is caused by . . . eating bread.
Again, cell phones use non-ionizing radio frequency waves (called RF Waves), which differs from the ionizing radiation of x-rays and radioactive material; this means, Cell Phone waves do not have enough power to cause ionizing effects to electrons or atom particles. Cell phone waves fall between FM radio waves and Microwaves used to heat food (read about Microwave effects on Food).
Let's answer the first burning question: Is there an actual correlation between Cell Phone usage and Cancer? Recent research sheds light on this burning question. Here are four major research studies that looked for correlations between Cell Phone Use and Cancer:
A study conducted by Hardell et al., compared 233 brain cancer patients, diagnosed between 1994 and 1996, to 466 control subjects in Sweden. The second study conducted by Muscat et al., compared 469 brain cancer patients, diagnosed between 1994 and 1998, with 422 control comparisons. A third study by Inskip et al., compared 782 brain cancer patients diagnosed between 1994 and 1998, with 799 control subjects. And a forth study by Johansen et al., compared data on 420,000 cell phone users in Denmark, between 1982 and 1995, to the Danish Cancer Registry.
All four studies came to similar conclusions:
* Brain cancer patients reported no greater cell phone usage compared to the subjects
* Controlling for different types of brain cancer, none were consistently associated
* When specific locations of tumors within the brain were considered, no correlations
* None of the studies showed a clear link between the side of the head on which the
A Judge ruled recently on an $800,000 lawsuit, where a medical doctor alleged that cell phone use caused his brain cancer. Judge Catherine Blake ruled that the plaintiff's scientific evidence wasn't sufficiently reliable or relevant.
Curiously, the plaintiff's expert witnesses was Dr. Lennart Hardell (who conducted one of the correlational studies above). While Hardell testified that the brain tumor in this particular case was supposedly caused by cell phone usage, Judge Blake pointed out this expert witness's contradiction: Hardell's 1999 research study where he reported no "overall increased risk for brain tumors associated with exposure to cellular phones."
Even though there is good evidence to show no consistent correlation between cell phone use and brain cancer, the second burning question is the theoretical question:
Why should RF Waves from Cell Phones causes damage to a human body in the first place? In other words, in light of what we know about non-ionizing RF Waves, are they even capable of causing any harmful effects to the human body — let alone, causing Cancer?
Have you ever noticed that when you talk on a cell phone, your ear gets warm? This has nothing to do with RF Waves somehow heating up your body. Instead, you could hold a shoe to your ear and replicate the same "warming" effect. Truth is, when holding ANYTHING to your head, you inhibit the escape of body heat — hence, that particular part of your body gets warmer. RF Waves emitted from cell phones are not capable of heating human tissue.
On the other hand the Microwaves used to heat food, will indeed heat up human tissue. So Dr Matt Recommends: DON'T stick your head in a microwave oven! Microwave heating happens when millions of tiny photons add a small amount of heat to water molecules, according to University of Virginia physics professor Louis A. Bloomfield, Ph.D.
Even microwaves cannot cause ionizing effects. This means, while microwaves can make food hot, they cannot change the molecular structure of food. Read Dr Matt's Myth-Busting articles about the effects of Microwaves on Food and the supposed dangers of Microwave Cooking in Plastic Containers.
The American Cancer Society has made this official statement: "the low energy level emitted from cell phones are unlikely to cause cancer." Even so, some people, paranoid about the assumed effects of RF Waves, use ear buds and headsets to move a Cell Phone away from their head.
But here's the problem: If Cell Phone Radio Frequency Waves were capable of doing damage to the head (which they aren't), then these same Radio Waves would do bodily damage down by your pocket or belt — or wherever else you put a cell phone when using a headset! So while some try to avoid Brain Cancer by keeping cell phones away from their ears — if their fears about Radio Frequency Waves were founded (which they aren't) — then a Cell Phone user would likely contract Testicular Cancer or Ovarian Cancer — instead of Brain Cancer.
Bottom Line: IF RF Waves were as powerful as Microwaves (which they aren't), THEN at worst they might warm the surface of your skin — but RF Waves are NOT as powerful as Microwaves (so they can't even warm your skin). Again, RF Waves are NOT as powerful as Microwaves and there is no coherent theory of Physics to explain why non-ionizing, low energy emitted by Cell Phones should cause any adverse effects to your body — let alone cause CANCER.
The American Cancer Society offers the same conclusion: Cell Phones use does not cause or even correlate to contracting Cancer in the area of the body where the mobile devise is held.
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