• VIVA Confusion!*

[ * to avoid potential additional confusion – the title of this blog is sarcastic, not what I like to see around]

Recent IARC evaluation of mobile phone radiation potential to cause cancer and classification of it as a 2B carcinogen has caused a stir of pro and contra opinions among the scientists, industry and news media. Unfortunately, the only outcome of this broad attention leads to only one – confusion. Regular mobile phone user, whether highly or not so highly educated, can only be confused by this flurry of contradictory opinions and spin-statements.

 

The outcome of the IARC evaluation has been commented (as a complaint) by Peter Wideman in the “Hot Topic” session at the recent Bioelectromagnetics Society meeting in Halifax, Canada, as dependent on the composition of the evaluation group. He has indicated, at least I got this impression, that IARC has selected not sufficiently good group to evaluate RF effects on cancer and this had dare implications on the outcome. He is indeed correct that the group composition had impact on the outcome. However, as he has admitted, his expectation was that the RF will be classified at most in group 3 – non classifiable as carcinogenic agent. So, he was clearly strongly displeased that the IARC evaluation, using the same science, did not reach the same conclusion as ICNIRP. I am certain that there are many who share opinion of Peter Wideman.

But, at this point in time and with the scientific evidence at hand, who is more correct – IARC or ICNIRP? There is no slightest doubt in my mind that the IARC evaluation is more reliable because the group consisted of scientists with very different opinions, often contradictory. With some very rare exception, these scientists were able to reach pretty overwhelming consensus that the evidence of the effects cannot be just a coincidence and cannot be outright dismissed. ICNIRP has not such ability as the composition of this group is made by inviting to ICNIRP of scientists with the same opinions and apparently ICNIRP does not tolerate differing opinions… Of course this way is easier to reach consensus, but is it really reflecting the current status of science? In my opinion it is certainly not. But what is the result – differing opinions by ICNIRP and IARC cause – confusion.

Even more extreme opinion about the IARC evaluation was expressed in news media interview by the current President-Elect of the Bioelectromagnetics Society – David Black – a New Zealand scientist and, as he calls himself, an industry consultant (http://www.stuff.co.nz/technology/gadgets/5082798/Research-on-mobile-phone-risks-consistently-unclear):

“…Auckland University honorary senior lecturer David Black, who specialises in electromagnetic safety, said he believed the question of radiation exposure risks had been settled. “The whole idea of cancer and mobile handsets – there was never a good reason to think there was a problem in the first place.” Continued research was behind the continued questions, Black said. “There’s a lot of people in academic careers whose futures depend on there being a continued problem, so there’s a great deal of talking up of a continued problem.”…”

(DL comment: this opinion not only says that scientists are chasing ghosts but also clearly says that the scientists doing mobile phone research are misleading people in order to secure their positions at work. Well, it is not the comment any open-minded scientist would expect from the soon-to-be President of the scientific society. Rather open mind and embracing all research directions of the scientific society should be the attribute of good President. And, indirectly, from the opinion presented by David Black one can assume what he thinks about the majority of IARC Working Group scientists – we were just securing our own future…)

Such opinions are the reason why industry is so keen on consulting with David Black who admitted it in one of his recent news media interviews. But such opinions are extreme, unfair, biased and not based in reality of current RF science and as such they cause really bad confusion.

 

Industry tried to nullify the outcome of the IARC evaluation in different statements what causes confusion:

Michael Milligan from the Mobile Manufacturers Forum (MMF) said:

“…After reviewing the available scientific evidence, it is significant that IARC has concluded that RF electromagnetic fields are not a definite nor a probable human carcinogen…”

(http://www.mmfai.org/public/docs/eng/MMF_PR_310511_IARC.pdf)

(DL comment: it is a clear attempt to turn attention from what was achieved at the meeting by stating that the worst case  scenario did not happen.)

Jack Rowley from GSM Association (GSMA) said:

“…The IARC classification suggests that a hazard is possible but not likely…”

(http://www.gsmworld.com/newsroom/press-releases/2011/6261.htm)

(DL comment: reading this statement I wonder where from the “…not likely…” wording has come. There was nothing like this said in the IARC meeting and Jack knows it as well as I, since we both were there.)

Patrick Frostell from the Federation of Finnish Technology Industries (FFTI) said:

“…IARC’s classification is in line with the dominant interpretation of current research data, according to which radiofrequency electromagnetic fields are neither carcinogenic to humans nor probably carcinogenic to humans…”

(http://www.teknologiateollisuus.fi/en/news/announcements/2011-6/no-change-in-international-assessment-of-the-health-effects-of-mobile-phones)

(DL comment: similarly as MMF’s this statement is pointing that the worst case scenario did not materialize so – no problem at all)

 

In the context of the IARC evaluation, that has shown that mobile phone radiation is a possible carcinogen based on epidemiological studies where participants used actual mobile phones sold in shops, statements from the industry about the safety of mobile phones cause again confusion, to say the least. Where from this certainty that everyone is well protected including children? We do not know it since these gadgets seemed to cause increase in cancer in their users… So, are the current safety standards sufficient? I have serious doubts but the industry apparently does not have:

MMF stated:

“…In understanding the implications of this assessment, it should be remembered that wireless communications equipment are designed to operate within international and national exposure limits which already have substantial safety margins built into them…” and “…Around the world, mobile phones are labelled with national regulatory approval marks – such as the EU’s ‘CE’ or the US’s FCC mark – to show they meet, amongst other things, relevant exposure standards…”

GSMA stated:

“…Over the past decade, more than 30 authoritative, independent expert scientific reviews undertaken around the world, including by the World Health Organisation, have concluded that present safety standards for mobile phones and base stations provide protection for all persons against all established health hazards…”

FFTA stated:

“…All approved, low-power, wireless data-transfer devices have been designed to comply with international and domestic safety-values. They have an inbuilt safety margin that takes account of all user groups, including children…”

How they can be so sure? No idea…

 

And to cause even more confusion here is selection of a variety of news media headlines:

Are mobiles a health risk? There’s no answer yet The Guardian – ‎Jun 3, 2011

Death by cellphone? Put the fear industry on hold Globe and Mail – ‎Jun 3, 2011‎

Do cellphones cause cancer? Unclear. But science proves they’re annoying. Washington Post – ‎Jun 3, 2011‎

The Cellphone Panic Wall Street Journal – ‎Jun 3, 2011‎

No, cell phones don’t cause cancer CNN – ‎Jun 2, 2011‎

Do Cell Phones Cause Cancer? 13 Other Possible Carcinogens Huffington Post – ‎Jun 2, 2011‎

Beware of your mobile phone, it can cause cancer: WHO International Business Times – ‎Jun 4, 2011‎

Cellphone hysteria, thanks to WHO New York Post – ‎Jun 4, 2011‎

Death by Cell Phone? Metropolitan News-Enterprise – ‎Jun 3, 2011‎ (Los Angeles)

Cellphone ban at schools urged Taipei Times – ‎Jun 3, 2011‎

Don’t panic over phone radiation JoongAng Daily – ‎Jun 3, 2011

Cellphones may cause cancer, but so what? CanadianBusiness.com (blog) – ‎Jun 2, 2011‎

Mobile Alert TIME –  ‎Jun 2, 2011‎

Editorial, 6/4: Don’t overreact on cell phones Lincoln Journal Star – ‎Jun 3, 2011‎

And, of course, depending whether one likes to stress the “danger” or alleviate it, there are listed other 2B carcinogens. If one likes to be more “scary” then lists e.g. asbestos and if one likes to suggest that there is no problem at all then lists e.g. coffee or pickled vegetables.

More confusion and there is no end to it.

 

WHO has just updated the Fact Sheet #193 (http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs193/en/index.html) on RF radiation and as the only outcome of the IARC evaluation (besides mentioning the 2B category) one can find information that the WHO will perform own evaluation of the health effects of RF radiation in 2012. So, the IARC and ICNIRP evaluations are not sufficient for the WHO. May be it is because they are so different in their conclusions. It will be interested how broad scope of views and opinions will represent WHO-selected review panel in 2012.

In any case, there will be still more confusion

 

I think that it would be time to finally get consensus that the situation is indeed unclear, that better studies are needed to prove or to disprove potential health effect. Scientists participating in different review groups should stop having it both ways: putting in review text all what is uncertain and should be improved with the available scientific evidence but then, in the end, conclude that there is no risk at all and that it is unlikely. Conclusions, however brief, should reflect the status of the science and this is most often not the case. There is too much of “politics” in this research field and too little of quality science. Too easily positive results are dismissed as “unlikely” or “unreplicated” or something “not normal” and the negative results are readily embraced as the “correct ones” and “expected ones”. Both kind of studies should be scientifically scrutinized. It is possible to get positive result by error but it is as easy, if not easier, to get negative result by error too. This single-sided approach to scrutinize positive studies but embrace negative ones should change. This is the way to move science forward and to finally get sufficient evidence that will not be confusing – whatever it will be.

But, for now, VIVA Confusion!

Advertisements

35 thoughts on “• VIVA Confusion!*

  1. Frans van Velden is correct, we do know that EMF is not innocent. What I meant was that we do not know the full spectrum of information for example mechanism etc.. But, even if we knew, the interest groups would say is not enough etc,. For example, back in 1952 was known that tobacco causes cancer, later in 1996 was confirmed the mechanism that tobacco causes cancer through the effects in gene p52. At that time industry started to do research to undermine this connection. That is why we need action now to protect public health, because the interest groups will push the discussion, who knows for how many years.

    Stelios A Zinelis

  2. Pingback: PR-kriget om mobilens cancerrisker « Mona Nilsson om Mobiltelefonins Hälsorisker

  3. Dear Stelios,

    why the argument ‘if we do not know ..’ since we do know. EMF has effects on the central nervous system (non thermal), see table on page 2-11 of the EMF Handbuch of the Ecolog Institute. All these gremia agree unambiguously, so why repeat the argument ‘we do not know’?

    I agree that what’s going on is unethical. The right way is to estimate the risk, develop a level of protection, take care of the victims, instead of deny and cause confusion.

    Suppose it is raining. We take an umbrella or we do not go outside. Nobody would argue ‘we do not know if we can get wet and have a cold’. Why do people still argue we don’t know if EMF has effects and possible consequences?

  4. Τhe problem with the confusion arises because some ones play games as been influenced, as Christian Patermann-Director of Biotechnology, Agriculture and Food Research, European Commission says: …Βehind the scenes, there are the dynamic … political forces at work…among the stakeholders with different interests in the field-scientists, policy makers, politicians, governments and regulatory bodies, industrialists, investors, etc, etc..
    But the general public? Unfortunately is left out!

    Even if the EMF was in category 2A or ONE, then the argument would be-lets replicate more studies or even if this causes cancer still you may not die from this cancer but some other cause etc, etc..

    I think what is going on is unethical and not confusion. If we do not know what EMF can cause to humans than we should not expose them to this degree. What good does it do to the public health if in 20-40 years we tell them, well at that time we were not sure about the effects, but we do today so we will take certain steps.

    Stelios A Zinelis

  5. GREAT REVIEW! I pretty much agree with all your thoughts you said in your article, especially at the middle of your article. Thank you, this info is very useful as always. Keep up the good work! You’ve got +1 more reader of your super blog:) Isabella S.

  6. “What we need are studies that would examine molecular level responses and show whether biochemical changes occuring in human body differ between “non-sensitive” people and people claiming to be “sensitive” to RF exposures.”

    But both might show, say, skin response, and the “whole person” reaction will differ — thus “sensitivity” is a mostly inappropriate term. (It further, in English at least, makes it easier to diminish by “feminizing” the seriousness of the reactivity, implying a vulnerability to maybe be attended to but – perversely – not to drive public policy.)

    Why not with permission follow for an extended period “hypersensitives” and blindly provoke responses in their domestic setting? Delayed response alone shold dictate this, against the lab impatience re immediate effect. Eg I have close acquaintance with someone who will suffer a seizure the morning following relatively low exposures. This person can usually detect microwave assault in the low microW range, even high nanoW range if exposed long enough. But when feeling in superior condition than usual, the seizure will surprise next morning, without having sensed the exposure. Recently eg at a fire when emergency vehicles & personnel with their RF emitters attended near this person’s place, the person involved would not “sense” the RF insult for being “up” for the short occasion, but the seizure occurred like clockwork next morning. And there are indeed people under lab experimental and other conditions who have clearly demonstrated uncanny ability to detect the RF insult, which cases should be of highest interest, not statistically averaged out, as is done.

    It is false that we “need molecular level biochemical studies of human body response to RF” to “sense” the causality and “react” appropriately in the name of public and environmental health. What doubt can there be that however front rank this researcher may be, when he ventures beyond the narrow research specialty into health prescription, that other motives are insinuated even unwittingly into his judgement?

    Neil Cherry pointed out long ago in comparing IARC’s 1982 benzene 2A classification, that already by that time there existed surpassing evidence for at least 2A for RF. Benzene is now a 1. There are researchers who feel RF should be at least 2A based on what IARC-ers saw in 2011.

  7. Pingback: New Zealand expert comes under further fire | EMFacts Consultancy

  8. Dear Dariusz,

    True, needed are scientific evidence (available for effects on the nervous system!) as well as clinical evidence (available!).

    In cases like mine all other causes (psychiatric, somatic, environmental, social) are excluded (again and again), so why would you still doubt?

    Nowhere the WHO states ‘there is no causal link’. That is just an opinion, a suggestion, like the conclusion of IARC RF Review 2009/16. The data of the report together with clinical evidence lead to another opinion.

    True, provocation studies have limited ability.

    What we know: there are effects (fact!) and: we have clinical evidence (fact!), other causes of pain and trauma excluded (fact!). Why do you still doubt?

    On the molecular level there is absorption by everyone and everything. The biochemical effects are taking place in living plants, animals, human beings (the energy comes from the system, not from the EMF, since EMF can not cause chemical changes, at most physical effects).

    There is no such claim as ‘I absorb EMF’. Anyone and anything does absorb and the effects are factual.

    If you still doubt, I invite you to investigate my case.

  9. I agree, although in fairness the classification is over RF generally, which does technically apply to WiFi. Without mechanistic understanding, it’s very hard to include or exclude individual RF emitters. The complete lack of epidemiology or in vitro studies on WiFi at all rather preclude any conclusions being made, and the acute exposure levels (particularly head exposure) are obviously much lower. Of course, conclusions can’t be made the other way either, so I agree that newspaper pieces shouldn’t start saying how IARC have classified WiFi as anything at all, carcinogenic or otherwise.

    Best Regards,
    – Graham

  10. Dear Dariusz,

    thanks for your piece.
    I think another point causing a lot of confusion is generated by the fact that general public associates radiofrequency EM fields to sources different form mobile handsets (I mean base station, WIFI devices, etc.). Only after carefully reading the Lancet Oncology paper one can appreciate the fact that the 2B classification decision is mainly due to the analysis of “mobile phones sudies”.I saw a lot of newspaper pieces talking about wifi sources at the same level of mobile handset as possible cancerogenic agents.

    BEST REGARDS
    Mauro Francavilla

  11. Vitas, I agree that possible is, by its very nature, not “likely”, but in common parlance the term “not likely” is normally used to mean “unlikely”, which is IARC classification 4. To use the term “not likely” is to imply that it is more likely than not that RF does _not_ cause cancer, when that’s not what a 2B classification means. It means there’s not enough evidence to classify it as “likely” or “unlikely”, but there’s enough evidence to consider it feasible, albeit with enough caveats to not consider it “likely”, pending further research.

    Unless you are not a native English speaker (which Jack Rowley most definitely is), using “not likely” is spin based on the understanding of how the average person on the street will interpret it as “unlikely”. Dariusz, I’m guessing this is your point here too?

    Dariusz isn’t spinning anything here, word semantics are extremely important in science.

    Best Regards,
    – Graham

  12. Vitas,
    It is “fun-tastic” logic! 😉

    However, let us stick to the facts. Here is quotation from the IARC Preamble (http://monographs.iarc.fr/ENG/Preamble/currentb6evalrationale0706.php) that explains what kind of scientific evidence may lead to classification of an agent as 2B possible carcinogen:

    Group 2B: The agent is possibly carcinogenic to humans.
    This category is used for agents for which there is limited evidence of carcinogenicity in humans and less than sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity in experimental animals. It may also be used when there is inadequate evidence of carcinogenicity in humans but there is sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity in experimental animals. In some instances, an agent for which there is inadequate evidence of carcinogenicity in humans and less than sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity in experimental animals together with supporting evidence from mechanistic and other relevant data may be placed in this group. An agent may be classified in this category solely on the basis of strong evidence from mechanistic and other relevant data.”

    It does not say anything about this that the agent in this category is “likely” or “not likely” because, simply, there is not enough scientific evidence to say so in the first place. If there would be better scientific evidence then the agent would not be in “2B” but in other category.

    Since, however, I have doubts that you will agree with me and the Preamble… Let us agree that we disagree 🙂

  13. What makes me to doubt – scientific evidence published in peer-reviewed journals is not sufficient. But this is not the whole story.

    Firstly, the symptoms, mentioned by you, are real and people feel them. However, are these symptoms caused by RF? We do not know, or at least some of us, scientists, say so. Let me explain why.

    The so far published studies, and based on them e.g. WHO evaluation stating that there is no causal link between symptoms felt by the so called “electro-sensitive” people and the RF, indeed suggest that there is no causality link. However, this WHO evaluation is based on the published provocation studies which, in my opinion, are methodologically inadequate to prove or disprove causality. Why? Because the symptoms that “electro-sensitive” persons feel can be induced also by the ordinary stress. So, if person is put in an unusual environment of research laboratory and then asked to guess when the exposure is on or when it is off, such person undergoes “experiment-associated stress” that can cause similar symptoms as these claimed to be caused by RF, e.g. headache, pain, etc. So, in my opinion, the so far executed provocation studies have very limited, if at all, ability to prove whether there can be any causality link bethween RF and symptoms experienced by some people.

    What we need are studies that would examine molecular level responses and show whether biochemical changes occuring in human body differ between “non-sensitive” people and people claiming to be “sensitive” to RF exposures.

    So, I do not doubt that the symptoms you write about are real. Just the scientific evidence of causality is not yet there. And the classical provocation studies will not resolve this controversy. We need molecular level biochemical studies of human body response to RF.

  14. Wow, this is kind of fascinating. It’s like being told that 1+1=2 is spin, and really 1+1=3. You’re doing my head in!

    Here is the logical breakdown of the argument:

    PREMISES:
    1. The IARC classification for a probable carcinogen is 2A.
    2. The IARC classification for a possible carcinogen is 2B.
    3. “Likely” is a simile for “probable”, i.e. they mean the same thing.
    4. The IARC classified RF as 2B

    CONCLUSION:
    Therefore, the IARC consider RF as a possible, but not likely carcinogen.

    What part of that argument is spin ?????

  15. Indications? The effects I mentioned are facts.

    I can assure you the results (like pain) are real and physiological very meaningful (damage, trauma).

    Why do you doubt? What makes you?

  16. Well, you have selectively cited what Martha Linet had to say about IARC evaluation. Dr. Linet when asked for the take home message said:

    “…The IARC working group classified cell phone use as a possible carcinogen. If one keeps in mind that possible means “maybe,” that fits with the positive reports but overall inconsistent data…”

    To me it is clear admission that Dr. Linet agrees with the 2B classification. And this in spite of the weaknesses of epi evidence that she pointed out in the interview with the NCI Cancer Bulletin (http://www.cancer.gov/ncicancerbulletin/062811/page4).

  17. That is the appropriate weblog for anyone who wants to find out about this topic. You realize so much its virtually laborious to argue with you (not that I truly would want…HaHa). You positively put a brand new spin on a topic thats been written about for years. Nice stuff, just great!

  18. Well now I am really confused, animal and mechanistic studies were even weaker than the epi studies. The combination of all with a “heavy” weight towards epi and all combined, the evidence is still “weak”. So, how is it possible they came to this conclusion?

  19. I agree completely Dariusz. “Possible carcinogen” makes no statement as to whether the carcinogenicity is “likely to be real” or “likely not to be real”, as both are considerably stronger statements than 2B allows for. 2A is most likely the former of the two, and the latter is reserved for class 4 agents, of which there is only one.

    The only rational interpretation of 2B, is that there’s enough evidence to consider the association worthy of further investigation to either confirm or deny the associations found. Of course, there’s a semantics argument that “not likely to be” can either mean “unlikely” (as in, likely not to be), or “not yet reached enough confidence to be considered likely”, both of which have a different slant.

    Jack Rowley’s job is to know the spin game, so it’s no surprise that he does it and does it effectively. To be honest, he’s more of an employee than a scientist, so it’s what he’s supposed to do.

    David Black, however, should know better. How can a scientist with admitted industry consultancy throw stones at researchers with a vested interest of maintaining funding?

    I agree this isn’t the open-minded rational scientific approach that would befit a president of BEMS.

    – Graham

  20. Vitas,
    In respect to “likely” and “not likely” I stand by my opinion. IARC did not say anyhing about it and Jack’s comment is just spin. Only new and good quality research can provide answer whether health effects are “likely” or “not likely”. What Jack said and you support is pure speculation without sufficient scientific basis.
    As to David’s comment – if you look at scientific evidence you can wonder. Also, his comment is inappropriate for the President-Elect of scientific society.

  21. Hey Dariusz, with regards to Jack’s comments my point was that IARC did NOT designate RF as 2A, which is their classification for a probable (i.e. likely) carcinogen. Hence Jack’s comment that IARC do not think that RF is a likey carcingen must be true, otherwise they would have classed it as 2A, instead of giving it a 2B rating for possible carcinogen. Seems like simple logic to me.

    I think it is a bit disengenuous to say that you feel offended by David Black’s comments when you seem so ready to cast aspersions elsewhere. If you are going to question the integrity of various players in the RF scene, then to be fair you must really be open to all possibilities, including those which are not palatable to you. Otherwise, you are just playing politics …

    Cheers
    Vitas

  22. Vitas, I disagre with you and stand behing what I said in my blog. IARC said that RF is possibly carcinogenic and there is nothing in the classification that says that such agents are not likely carcinogenic. It is on the other hand often used expression by those who wish to dismiss the whole issue. So, even if they “admit” that there are some positive findings they immediately say”yes there are some positive studies, but it is not likely that there are effects”. So, Jack has jumped to own conclusions. IARC said that RF is possibly carcinogenic and did not say thjat it is not likely carcinogenic.
    As to David Black’s comments about scientists upkeeping issue in order to have work – well, as scientist doing this research I feel offended by such comment and possibly many other scientists in this field feel. Considering how very limited and weak quality our scientific evidence is, such claims can be only considered as an attempt of industry consultant to “shut up inconvinient activity”. This is “politics” not science. And we need science to clarify the issues.

  23. Indeed, epi evidence is not very convincing and I have crtitcized epi studies in this blog on numerous occasions. However, when combining evidence from epi, animal and mechanistic studies the conclusion is that 2B classification reflects the current state of the knowledge and it is my opinion too. And it is necessary to remember that the 2B is the lowest of the classifications that links agent to cancer. So, the 2B classification is such that additional scientific evidence can change it both up to 2A or down to 3. In fact, because of the weakness of epi evidence RF was not classified as 2A… So, I do not see the problem. The 2B classification is just reminder that we need better studies in order to make more reliable classification, but at the same time we should not arbitrarily dismiss evidence that was compiled untill now as beeing just artifact or chance finding. For this we need better studies, including epi and mechanistic.

  24. Hey Dariusz,

    The IARC classification for probably carcinogenic to humans is “2A” (see below). So Jack Rowley is actually quite correct in saying that the IARC has indicated that the an RF cancer hazard is possible but not likley since they classified it as a “2B”.

    Group 1 Carcinogenic to humans
    Group 2A Probably carcinogenic to humans
    Group 2B Possibly carcinogenic to humans
    Group 3 Not classifiable as to its carcinogenicity to humans
    Group 4 Probably not carcinogenic to humans 1

    FWIW, I also agree with David Black’s comment that we need to be alert to ALL possibilities of bias, *including* researchers’ self interest in making exagerated claims about RF effects in order to secure research grants. I’m not sure how you can avoid this though, as the research granting system is highly competitive and every researcher feels pressured to beat up the significance of their proposed study in order to win the grant. But we need to be honest about this.

    This is just one of the many inherent problems of the scientific system. See the following Wiki for a discussion of how medical science often gets it wrong:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_P._A._Ioannidis

    Cheers
    Vitas

  25. Comments by Dr. Martha Linet in the latest issue of NCI Bulletin sort of some up why the IARC decision seems controversial as it was heavily weighted on epi studies (Interphone, Hardell) …. based on Dr. Linet’s assessment, one has to wonder how a decision can be made on such “light” evidence….
    “Most of the studies are based on data from interviews about cell phone use patterns from brain tumor patients and control subjects. We know that this kind of self-reported data is not necessarily accurate. Patients may be more likely to over-report use than controls, or they may mis-recall on which side of their head they held their phone. Cell phone technology has changed dramatically over time, and the studies cover different periods. The way people use cell phones has also changed over time, which makes accurate recall more difficult.

    In addition, none of the epidemiologic studies measure actual radiofrequency exposure to the brain; the exposure is estimated from interview data.”

  26. Frans, yes, we have indications of effects but we still need to imporove our scientific evidence in order to be certain that they are real and physiologically meaningful.

  27. Dariusz,

    There are effects, you find them e.g. in the ICNIRP RF Review 2009/16 (table pages 197/198 and more) and in the EMF Handbuch page 2-11 (of all 15 gremia 14 agree probable or possible effects on the central nervous system, 1 does not decide). Or do you disagree?

    Frans

  28. This topic seems to be of the type that the closer you look, the less you really know.

  29. Frans, I do not think that there is sufficient evidence to decide about any health effects… We are still far from the situation when we could reliably give any conclusions about health effects.

  30. True, many people are causing confusion.

    I did not get the sarcasm, I’m afraid.

    Of course science should move forward, but as far as I know there is sufficient evidence maybe not of carcinogenity but certainly of effects. Don’t you think?

  31. Dear Dariusz,

    You bring up many valid points…

    The whole RF issue is plagued by politics, conflicts of interests, and misrepresentations; until this behaviour is changed, it will be viva confusion (but only to persons who have not delved into the studies).

    In all fairness I believe that the IARC decision was long overdue, however there will never be any consensus until certain persons are cleansed of their bias.

    Money talks, and until such time as those who are on the payroll of Industry are advising health entities, nothing will change for the better.

    The only persons who might be always confused by the back and forth knowledge situation, are those who do not know the truth, or have not had the countless hours to research from all sides of this RF EMR health issue. By the way – Great article!

    Best Regards,
    Enrico Grani

    Stop-Radiation

  32. Dear Frans,
    If you read carefully my piece you will see that the statements from scientists and from the industry cause lots of confusion for the mobile phone users. No doubt in my mind.
    As to the saying “2B carcinogen” – it is often used to make sentences shorter and it is understood, of course, that 2B carcinogen = possibly carcinogenic agent. So, I see no problem here.
    As to the “VIVA Confusion!” title opf my blog – well, it is sarcasm and I can not understand how anyone can understand it differently 😉
    Best, Dariusz

  33. Dear Dariusz,

    there is no confusion.

    The working group of IARC was almost unanimous.

    There is no ‘2B carcinogenic’. 2B means ‘possibly carcinogenic’.

    The IARC group has not evaluated RF effects but carcinogenity, based on epidemiologic studies.

    I do not understand your ‘Viva Confusion’! Why do you like confusion?

    By the way, there is also no confusion about effects on the central nervous system (EMF Handbuch page 2-11 as well as ICNIRP RF Review 2009/16 table pages 197/198).

  34. Another truly outstanding piece Dariusz, many thanks.

    Best Regards,
    – Graham Lamburn
    Powerwatch UK

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s