ICNIRP Guidelines are not safe


Expert warns Irish mobile phone masts unsafe

By Dan Buckley and Tom Prendeville

ONE of the world's leading experts in mobile phone technology has warned that the radiation output from Irish phone masts is at least 100 times too high for safety.

His warning comes as new research reveals that long-term use of mobile phones poses an increased risk of brain cancer.

According to Dr David Aldridge, a scientist who has worked developing microwave technology for the US Government, the international 'safety' limits which Ireland adheres to are out of date and totally flawed.

"What is happening is that the external signals (from mobile phones) are swamping the body's natural internal signals," he said.

This can lead to cancers and a whole range of other serious medical disorders, particularly among children, he said.

"Expose a cell to microwaves from a mast or phone and it interferes with the cell repair process. In the case of young children, the rate of cells dividing in half to form new ones is so fast that you end up with a vast number of what we call mis-repairs."

According to Dr Aldridge, the current international safety standards are over 50 years old and obsolete.

Meanwhile, a new study into the risks associated with using mobile phones has found an increased risk of brain tumours in people who have used them for 10 years or more.

The study, by German researchers, found an increased risk of glioma, an often deadly brain cancer, in people who had used mobile phones for over a decade.

However, a similar study in Britain appears to contradict these findings and concludes that there is no proof that long-term mobile phone use can cause glioma.

Both studies are part of the 13-nation Interphone Study, an effort sanctioned by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to assess possible health risks from the radiation emitted by mobile phones.

The German study, conducted by Joachim Schu[e]z and colleagues at the University of Mainz, compared a group of 749 brain tumour patients with 1,494 similar people who had not used mobile phones and found a doubling of the risk of glioma after 10 years of use.

They said the number of people in the study who had used the phones for 10 years was small and the findings need to be confirmed by other studies.

This same 10-year threshold has previously been reported for acoustic neuroma, a benign tumour of the acoustic nerve, by two Swedish teams.

"This result is very difficult to interpret," said Dr Schu[e]z.

"I can only say that it's still an open question whether there is a tumour risk for more than 10 years of use."

The British researchers found no overall increased risk in people who used mobile phones.

Although it revealed a significantly increased risk for tumours that developed on the same side of the head where patients said they most often held the phone, lead researcher Patricia McKinney, an epidemiologist at the Leeds Institute of Genetics, Health and Therapeutics, said that the finding probably was due to many patients not accurately recalling which ear they had used most.

The Swedish study, conducted by researchers at the Karolinska Institute, found an increased risk for a non-cancerous brain tumour called acoustic neuroma after 10 years of mobile phone use.

Mobile phones: Do's and don'ts

Keep mobile phone conversations short.

Consider using a text message or picture message as an alternative.

Choose a handset with a lower SAR rating, which means it emits less radiation.

Don't hold the phone to your head when you can use a hands-free kit.

Consider using a phone with an external aerial.

Limit the amount of time that children use mobile phones.


Informant: Iris Atzmon

Cellular Phones, Cordless Phones, and the Risks of Glioma and Meningioma

Conflict of interest in funding the Interphone Studies

Commentary, American Journal of Epidemiology:

Cellular Phones, Cordless Phones, and the Risks of Glioma and Meningioma (Interphone Study Group, Germany)

Schu[e]z et al., American Journal of Epidemiology Advance Access published January 27, 2006

This study, similar to all Interphone studies published to date, has several serious problems. For one, its core findings report no risk for glioma or for meningioma from “regular” cellphone use (”regular” use is defined as at least one incoming or outgoing call per week for 6 months or more). Yet, it reports a 2.2-fold risk of glioma after more than 10 years of cellphone use with a 94% confidence that this risk is not due to chance. Also, it found a 1.96-fold risk of high-grade glioma for women from “regular” cellphone use with a 98% confidence. Given the specific problems of the studyæall of which would underestimate the risk of a brain tumoræthese findings are ominous.

Here is a list of the main problems in this study:

1. The definition of unexposed cases and controls included subjects exposed to cordless phones. Previous studies have shown that cordless phone use increases the risk of glioma [1] and meningioma. [2] Including exposed subjects in the unexposed group will cause an underestimation of risk.

2. The definition of a “regular” cellphone user is so minimal that almost all “regular” cellphone users would not be expected to be at risk, even if cellphone use is found to create a very high risk of glioma and meningioma.

As mentioned earlier, regular use as defined by all Interphone studies, is “at least one incoming or outgoing call per week for 6 months or more.” As to longer periods of “regular” cellphone use, this study reported only 14% of the glioma cases and 6% of meningioma cases used a cellphone for 5 years or more; for 10 years or more, the percentages are 3% and 1%, respectively.

To understand that “regular” cellphone use as defined in this study is so minimal that risk ought not to be expected, even if there is a high risk of glioma and meningioma from cellphone use, consider a hypothetical study of smokers and the risk of lung cancer. Would a risk of lung cancer (which is a high risk for smokers) be expected to be found for smokers who had smoked once a week, for 6 months or more with only 12 subjects (3%) smoking for 10 years or more?

3. There is a strong possibility of selection bias. Some 30.5% of controls refused to participate in the study compared to only 4.8% of glioma cases and 4.9% of meningioma cases. If a higher proportion of controls who participate (compared to controls who refused participatio) used a cellphone, then any risk would be underestimated. This result (an underestimated ris) seems to be at play in this study.

Some 58% of controls who refused to participate answered a question whether or not they used a cellphone. These groups of non-participating control (one of both sexes between the ages of 40 and 59 years of age, and another of men between 30 and 39 years of age) provided confirmation that a selection bias problem indeed existed in this study. That is, these non-participating control groups used cellphones less frequently than did the participating control group.

[There were two small exceptions to this selection bias: Controls between 60 and 69 years who refused to participate, and those that did participate, reported a common amount of cellphone use and so did not contribute, one way or the other, to selection bias. This group represents roughly 15% of the total controls. The only non-participating controls that reported higher use of cellphones compared to participating controls were females 30-39 years of age. This would have caused an overestimation of risk among a very small proportion (about 8%) of all the controls.]

4. Substantial funding of this, and all Interphone studies, comes from the cellphone industry with a resultant, but undeclared, conflict-of-interest. Though the study reports that this funding “was governed by agreements that guaranteed complete scientific independence” it seems doubtful that this “guaranteed” “scientific independence” is possible. Researchers’ careers are dependent on receiving research grants. Even with isolation of funding for a specific study from the researchers themselves, the conflict-of-interest in such funding is not resolved. Because the researchers know where the funding has come from, the old adage, “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you,” becomes the effective psychological reality (whether conscious or unconscious).

Friedman and Richter explored this concern by reviewing the conflict-of-interest problems found in studies published in the New England Journal of Medicine and The Journal of the American Medical Association during 2001. The paper found a strong association between those studies whose authors had an economic conflict of interest and, as well, reported positive findings (P <0.001, equivalent of greater than a 99.9% confidence). [3]

In the case of cellphone studies, could the findings of these industry-funded studies have a correlation with findings of no harm from cellphone use? It is interesting to note that the Interphone studies, all receiving substantial cellphone industry funding, consistently put forth press releases highlighting the “no risk” findings from cellphone use. But the Hardell et al. studies (all independently funded) consistently are finding a greater and greater risk from cellphone use with each new study they publish.


1. Hardell et al., Case–control study of the association between the use of cellular and cordless telephones and malignant brain tumors diagnosed during 2000–2003; Environ Res. 2006 Feb;100(2):232-41.

2. Hardell et al., Pooled analysis of two case-control studies on the use of cellular and cordless telephones and the risk of benign brain tumors diagnosed during 1997-2003; International Journal of Oncology 28: 508-518, 2006.

3. Friedman and Richter, Relationship between conflicts of interest and research results; J Gen Intern Med. 2004 Jan;19(1):51-6.



Limitations of the Interphone study: Cellular Phones, Cordless Phones, and the Risks of Glioma and Meningioma







Knowledge Filtration (and Dead Microbiologists)




Ärztin stellt fest: Schauenstein ist kein Einzelfall

Bei der Sitzung des Schauensteiner Stadtrates erhielt auch Dr. Cornelia Waldmann-Selsam das Rederecht. Die Bamberger Ärztin hatte bereits bei der Demonstration am 20. Januar vor den gesundheitlichen Gefahren gepulster elektromagnetischer Hochfrequenz-Strahlung gewarnt, die von Mobilfunk-Sendern, Handys sowie schnurlosen Telefonen nach DECT-Standard ausgehen.

SCHAUENSTEIN – Die engagierte Ärztin hatte am Montag unmittelbar vor der Stadtratssitzung mehrere Anwohner in der Umgebung des Schauensteiner Mobilfunk-Senders besucht, die Strahlungsbelastung gemessen und die Daten mit Angaben der Betroffenen über Beschwerden in ein Register aufgenommen.

Wie Waldmann-Selsam dem Stadtrat berichtete, verfügt sie über ein gutes Messgerät, mit dem sie in Schauenstein hohe Belastungen festgestellt hat. In der Blumenstraße seien es an etlichen Stellen mehrere 1000 Mikrowatt pro Quadratmeter gewesen. Auf einer Terrasse habe sie bis zu 5000 Mikrowatt festgestellt, in den Häusern und der Schule mehrere hundert Mikrowatt. Im Falle der Schule vermutet die Ärztin ein Zusammenwirken mit dem Radar vom Döbraberg. Bei erneuten Messungen in der Schule habe sich gezeigt, dass die neuen Abschirmgardinen in einem der Klassenzimmer (wir berichteten) eine Reduzierung der Werte auf die Hälfte, teilweise bis auf ein Drittel bewirken.

Angesichts der hohen Messwerte im Wohngebiet zeigte sich Waldmann-Selsam äußerst besorgt. Wie sie im Stadtrat berichtete, stellen sich nach ihren Erfahrungen bereits bei Belastungen ab zehn Mikrowatt die ersten Symptome ein. Bei Werten ab 100 Mikrowatt seien viele Leute betroffen.

Die Bamberger Ärztin machte aber auch deutlich, dass Schauenstein kein Einzelfall ist. In den vergangenen zwei Jahren habe sie an 170 Standorten von Mobilfunk-Sendern zirka 1000 Leute in ihren Wohnungen und an ihren Arbeitsplätzen besucht.


Bei den Messungen habe sie festgestellt, dass oft Nachbarn oder Arbeitskollegen unabhängig voneinander an den gleichen Symptomen litten. Waldmann-Selsam nannte Schlafstörungen, Depressionen, Aggressionen, Veränderungen des Blutbildes sowie Herzrhythmusstörungen. An den Arbeitsplätzen würden viele über Konzentrationsschwierigkeiten klagen. „Die Leute können ihre Arbeit nicht mehr machen“, sagte die Ärztin.

Waldmann-Selsam zeigte sich entsetzt darüber, dass in Deutschland bislang noch nie Anwohner von Mobilfunk-Sendern von behördlicher Seite untersucht worden seien. „Wir Ärzte haben bis vor zwei Jahren nichts davon gewusst“, versicherte sie. Man habe bis dahin stets den offiziellen Verlautbarungen geglaubt, dass von den Sendern keine Gesundheitsgefahren ausgehen würden. Deshalb hätten die Ärzte bis zu diesem Zeitpunkt bei den Patienten-Untersuchungen nicht nach Sendern oder schnurlosen Telefonen gefragt.

„Das sind schwere Verdachtsmomente“, lautete das Resümee von Waldmann-Selsam, die auf die Ärzte-Initiativen in Hof, Naila, Coburg, Lichtenfels und Bamberg hinwies. Angesichts der massiven Krankheitshäufungen in Schauenstein müsse der Bau weiterer Sender am bestehenden Standort verhindert werden. „Hier ist Gefahr in Verzug“, betonte die Ärztin.

Zur Klärung der Ursache für die Beschwerden fordert Waldmann-Selsam auch das Abschalten der bestehenden Anlagen und eine anschließende ärztliche Verlaufsbeobachtung bei den Betroffenen. Dies sollte nach ihren Vorstellungen gleichzeitig in Schauenstein und einigen anderen oberfränkischen Kommunen geschehen, um Vergleiche ziehen zu können. Dazu schlug sie die Gemeinde Michelau im Kreis Lichtenfels vor, in der es um einen Mobilfunk-Sender ähnliche Probleme gebe. Waldmann-Selsam bot an, den Kontakt zwischen den Kommunalpolitikern herzustellen. W.R.


Nachricht von den Mobilfunkkritikern Rhein-Haard



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Februar 2006

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