EMF Health-effects Research

Long-term and frequent cellular phone use and risk of acoustic neuroma,

Salahaldin AH, Bener A

Int Tinnitus J, 12(2):145-148, 2006

Human exposure to radio frequency radiation has increased dramatically during recent years from widespread use of mobile phones, and in some studies this exposure has been linked to the development of acoustic neuroma.

The aim of our study was to describe the epidemiology of acoustic neuroma in a newly developed country, Qatar. We reviewed all cases of acoustic neuroma registered at the Hamad Medical Corporation during the period 2004-2005. We collected and assessed the sociodemographic information, presenting complaints, audiological evaluation, and laboratory investigations.

During the study period, we diagnosed acoustic neuroma in 13 patients (10 women, median age 55 years, and 3 men, median age 49 years). Most of the cell phones were used daily for an average of 14 times per day (range, 8-20 times) and had been used for the duration of more than 5 years, with the exception of 3 patients who had used the cell phone excessively (> 20 minutes per call more than five times daily) owing to the nature of their jobs.

The total incidence rate for Qatar was found to be 17.2 per million population.

In conclusion, the incidence of acoustic neuroma in Qatar is slightly higher than that in other countries. Despite the presence of facilities in Qatar, no proper screening and management protocol is available. This study highlights the need for the development and implementation of a national registry plan whereby effective care services can be delivered and high-risk groups can be targeted.

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