Non-Cancerous Tumors and Cellphones Not Related, Per New Danish Study

Posted by at 3:25 pm on July 14, 2011

A new, large-scale study found that people who used a cellphone for over 10 years do not have an increased risk of a non-cancerous brain tumor. According to a Thursday report, the study looked at 2.8 million Danish adults who have used a cellphone for between 11 and 15 years. The study concluded that the group was no more likely to develop acoustic neuroma than newer or non-users.

The slow-growing tumors are also called vestibular schwannomas and form on the main nerve running from the inner ear to the brain. They have the potential to cause ringing in the ears, balance problems and dizziness. In some rare cases, they can be large enough to press against the brain and become life-threatening.

Acoustic neuromas grow in the area of the brain where greater energy emitted from the cellphones is absorbed said Dr. Joachim Schuz, a member of the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), who headed up the new study.

The argument is that those with acoustic neuromas may have them as a result of cellphone use, especially if it’s on the same side as where they frequently hold their cellphones. Schuz’s team found that this wasn’t the case, however, and wrote so in their American Journal of Epidemiology report.

Long-term users also didn’t exhibit larger-than-expected tumors, nor did they have tumors on the right side of their head, despite usually holding the phone on that side.

But Shuz admits that even the long-term cellphone users in this study didn’t use their devices for that long. Acoustic neuromas grow so slowly that often many years can pass between the first symptoms and a diagnosis.

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