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Sunday, July 21, 2013

Do Cell Phones Cause Cancer?

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC), along with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have been actively involved in investigating issues related to health concerns caused by radio frequency (RF) exposure.

What is Radio Frequency (RF)?

RF, also known as radio waves, are produced by the movement of electrical charges from radios, TV's, cell phones, pagers, microwave ovens, cordless phones, and other communication devices. Radiofrequency energy is a form of electromagnetic radiation.

The Danger of RF's

Electromagnetic radiation that causes heat, such as those emitted from microwaves, x-rays and radon, is linked to the increase in cancer. Radiofrequency exposure from cell phone use does cause heating. Generally, the RF's are not enough to increase body temperature and absorb tissue that is close to the phone. However, some research shows that the effect depends on how much one uses a cell phone, and how close the cell phone is held during use.

Research Results

Research studies done in the U.S., Great Britain, Sweden, and Denmark found no significant proof that cell phone use increases the risk of cancer. However, researchers in Great Britain did find evidence of an increase in the risk of acoustic neuroma among people whose cell phone use also increased over a five-year period. Acoustic neuroma is a noncancerous tumor on the main nerve that leads from the inner ear to the brain. No link to cancer, however, can be confirmed.

The American Cancer Society states that the evidence is not strong enough to link cell phone use to cancer and needs further investigation. The Centers for Disease Control, Federal Communications Commission, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration have all reached similar conclusions.


With research showing no conclusive evidence of a link between cell phone use and cancer, and the increasing trend toward texting on cell phones, no health issue seems to be eminent. However, those who remain concerned should simply limit their cell phone usage to limit their exposure to RF's.

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