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Cellphones Classified as ‘Possibly Carcinogenic’

May 31, 2011  •  Post A Comment

A panel of scientists convened by the World Health Organization has concluded that cellphones are “possibly carcinogenic” to human beings, Time reported on its Healthland website.

The scientists, who reviewed a wide range of existing studies on the topic, determined that using a cellphone may increase the risk of brain cancer, the story reported.

“The group, which is working on a research monograph that will soon be available, classified cellphones in the carcinogenic category 2B, similar to chemicals like the pesticide DDT and gasoline engine exhaust. In slightly clearer terms, that means cellphone radiation is ‘possibly carcinogenic’ to human beings,” the publication reported.

Said Dr. Jonathan Samet, who chaired the working group of the WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer, which produced the study: "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 group found an association between handset use and tumors, according to the report. Additional study will be ongoing, with an emphasis on how great the risk is and what can be done to alleviate it, but some experts suggested a quick fix of simply using an earpiece instead of holding the phone up to the user’s ear.

9 Comments

  1. It’s even easier than that – Stay off the bloody phone. Most people are not important enough to have the phone glued to their ear all day long!

  2. If something is of great utility (usage, etc), it will surely have its own problems as well; cell phones are no exception. Asking a person never to use his cell phone will seem ridiculous in today’s world in spite the common buzz of the various cancers that might arise due to excessive usage of the mobile phones. With the cell phones penetration into every corner in life where this kind of connectivity was not even thought off during the wired days, the mobile phone is a part and parcel of life that is equivalent to your personal vehicle. The cell phones are a handy device in case of emergency that’s inevitable in the present scenario. However, I think, if using a Bluetooth or a earpiece that moves away the user’s head from the antenna can reduce the RF(Radio Frequency) electromagnetic waves, then it’s worth a practice to keep ourselves at bay from the carcinogenic effect.

  3. I’m confused. Is there _insufficient_ evidence that using a cell phone could give you cancer, or, as boingboing said, is…”the evidence supporting that idea…very weak.” Because of course the difference is that, with _insufficient_ evidence it could in the future turn out that cell phones actually do contribute to cancer, but up until that seminal study, there was insufficient _proof_. Versus there being evidence that, in fact, the chances of getting cancer from using a cell phone is very weak.

  4. Most industry sponsored studies say cellphones don’t cause cancer. But all cellphones come with warnings of not using it near your head or keep distance and stuff (even the IPhone). Most non industry sponsored studies say cellphones do/might cause cancer. It wouldn’t surprise us if they actually do. After all, industry touted tobacco as safe, why wouldn’t they do the same now? And even more, what else can we do? Can we stop living the wireless life or should we die trying?

  5. We’ve known this information ever since we have had cell phones. But, it is such low of a risk that most humans don’t really care. As you said, yes, hands-free alternatives are probably better – over time. But, as for myself, I’m not too worried. I usually text rather than speak.but thanks for the info anyway,it’s a help.thanks for sharing this.

  6. Mobile phones don’t give you brain tumors. There is no mechanism by which they *could* give you brain tumors. It just simply cannot happen. Mobile phones do not make your brain heat up, except in as much as they get warm in use because they’re drawing more power from the battery. Holding an insulated plastic box to your ear makes your brain heat up, because it insulates one side of your head. You’d be amazed how much heat your head radiates off. If you block that heat radiation, your head will warm up. This is how hats work. It’s not exactly difficult, you know.

  7. Obviously there is a small probability that cell phones cause cancer. However, there’s no known mechanism for them to contribute to cancer and there’s no good statistical evidence that they have anything to do with cancer.

  8. Some advocacy groups contend the study raised serious concerns because it showed a hint of a possible link between very heavy phone use and a rare but often deadly form of brain tumor. I know professional people are also doing their job to research more about this issue. This is not a joke and we’re talking here our health. But we also can’t deny the fact that cellphone is already part of people daily lives. Thanks for sharing this!

  9. I don’t know about all this, I need to see some concrete facts linking the cellphones to cancer instead of all these maybes and ifs, before I stop using mine a lot.

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