Mobile cancer risk higher than reported
A recent study into the link between mobile phone use and brain cancer massively underestimates the danger posed to users, leaving the industry facing a brain tumor pandemic, a US campaign group claims.
The Environmental Health Trust says the Interphone study underestimates the risk of developing a form of brain cancer by at least 25%, due to flaws in the design and execution of the study.
Corrected figures show the risk of developing meningioma – a tumor of the brain lining – increases 24% for every year of mobile phone use, compared to Interphone’s conclusion of minimal risk.
The risk of developing glioma – another form of brain tumor - from using a mobile on the same side of the head at least once a week for six months or more, was around 55% compared to Interphone’s 24%, the Trust found.
Lloyd Morgan, a senior research fellow with the trust who headed up the research, presented the results to the annual Bioelectromagnetics Society meeting in Seoul, South Korea, yesterday.
“For every 100 hours of cell phone user there was a 26% increased risk of meningioma,” Morgan said, adding. “[T]here is going to be one hell of a brain tumor pandemic unless people are warned and encouraged to change current cell phone use behaviors.”
The Trust corrected Interphone’s figures using the average value of published odds ratios for under five years of mobile phone use.
UK charity Cancer Research dismissed the revised figures, claiming they made little difference to the overall Interphone results, the Daily Mail reports.
The results of the WHO-backed, decade-long, Interphone study were released last month, but failed to establish a causal link between mobile phone use and increased risk of developing brain tumors.