Monday, July 18, 2011


Yay! Current research has said cell phones are safe.

Boo! Out of the blue, IARC (International Agency For Research On Cancer) said that cell-phone-radiation exposure was "possibly carcinogenic to humans."

Uh oh! What should we do?

IARC put cell phones in category 2B on the agency's scale -- below cigarette smoke, but our phones are now in the same category as the pesticide DDT, and gasoline-engine exhaust. Dr. Jonathan Samet, Chairman of the investigating group, told reporters: "A review of the human evidence of epidemiological studies shows an increased risk of glioma and malignant types of brain cancer in association with wireless-phone use."

The "emperor of maladies," (that's what Siddhartha, [Mukherjee]. author, oncologist, deemed cancer), is now on the blackboard on which you list your worries.

Even so, other guys continue to say, "Not to worry, folks."

Radiation is considered potentially carcinogenic when it is powerful enough to ionize atoms or molecules. Nuclear decay and X-ray can cause genetic damage that leads to cancer. Cell-phone radiation is considered too weak to cause such damage.

The FCC, the National Cancer Institute, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and many other investigators have agreed that cell phones are safe to use. On the website for the World Health Organization's it says "To date, no adverse health effects have been established for mobile phone use."

Is information being covered up? Cell phones are a global mutli-trillion-dollar industry. By controlling funding the way the tobacco industry did, perhaps we aren't being given the real facts.

Oh boy, scientists and engineers create brilliant life-changing gizmos. We change our lives and fall in love with some magical doo-wicket, and then, we have to reinvent ourselves to keep using the thing.

So, start reinventing, folks. Use a wired headset. Get used to texting and using your apps. Don't use your cell phone as an alarm clock. Avoid phoning from weak areas, (such as an elevator), since the phone emits more radiation when you're calling from a weak area). Use a radiation-blocking case.

What keeps blaring in my mind is TOBACCO -- how the cigarette industry has managed to continue selling and promoting smoking.

I am remembering the warnings on coffee -- it hurts you, you can't sleep. (I drink three cups a day, and it doesn't affect my sleep patterns.) Remember when we were told artificial sweeteners cause cancer in lab rats? (I use still use them my coffee).

Is cell phone cancer kind of like "don't fly in airplanes?" There are lots of things we do that are life-threatening. Even crossing the street can be dangerous. Hey, watching TV, or using a computer are dangerous, if over-used or you sit too close.

No, you don't need to erase "phone" from the blackboard, but remember, worrying can kill you too.


Carola said...

I like your last line. I remember when I quit using electric blankets because I was afraid of radiation (I still don't use them). Yet I still have an ear-bud in my ear all night so I can listen to a talking book!

Peggy Gaffney said...

After reading about the massive doses of cyclamate the lab rats were exposed to in the study finding it carcinogenic, my theory was such an unbalanced diet of anything would prove hazardous to your health - if not cancer, some other disease. The old adage about moderation in all things was good common sense.
The real danger from cell phones is not cancer, but accidental death (and not necessarily of the cell phone user) because of inattention to what you are doing when talking or texting while driving or even walking down the street. We've probably all seen someone start across a busy intersection without looking, too absorbed in their phone conversation to notice the traffic - or the red light.

Linda Phillips said...

Well put about worrying Em! Clearly there are a zillion things that can cause cancer. I highly doubt that cell phones have that much radiation. Fortunately for me, I rarely use mine, unlike some poeple who use theirs constantly...but I sure am not going to loose any sleep over cell phones causing cancer!