EMF Health-effects Research

Increased incidence of cancer near a cell-phone transmitter station

Wolf R, Wolf D.

Inter J Cancer Prev 1(2):123-128, 2004

Significant concern has been raised about possible health effects from exposure to radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic fields, especially after the rapid introduction of mobile telecommunication systems. Parents are especially concerned with the possibility that children might develop cancer after exposure to the RF emissions from mobile telephone base stations erected in or near schools.

The few epidemiologic studies that did report on cancer incidence in relation to RF radiation have generally presented negative or inconsistent results, and thus emphasized the need for more studies that should investigate cohorts with high RF exposure for changes in cancer incidence.

The aim of this study is to investigate whether there is an increased cancer incidence in populations, living in a small area, and exposed to RF radiation from a cell-phone transmitter station.

This is an epidemiologic assessment, to determine whether the incidence of cancer cases among individuals exposed to a cell-phone transmitter station is different from tat expected in Israel, in Netanya, or as compared to people who lived in a nearby area.

Participants are people (n=622) living in the area near a cell-phone transmitter station for 3-7 years who were patients of one health clinic (of DW). The exposure began 1 year before the start of the study when the station first came into service. A second cohort of individuals (n=1222) who get their medical services in a clinic located nearby with very closely matched, environment, workplace and occupational characteristics was used for comparison.

In the area of exposure (area) eight cases of different kinds of cancer were diagnosed in a period of only one year. This rate of cancers was compared both with the rate of 31 cases per 10,000 per year in the general population and the 2/1222 rate recorded in the nearby clinic (area B). Relative cancer rates for female were 10.5 for area A. 0.6 for area B and 1 for the whole town of Netanya.

Cancer incidence of women in area A was thus significantly higher (p<0.0001) compared with that of area B and the whole city. A comparison of the relative risk revealed that there were 4.15 times more cases in area than in the entire population.

The study indicates an association between increased incidence of cancer and living in proximity to a cell-phone transmitter station.

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