EMF Health-effects Research

Effects of short-term W-CDMA mobile phone base station exposure on women with or without mobile phone related symptoms.

Furubayashi T, Ushiyama A, Terao Y, Mizuno Y, Shirasawa K, Pongpaibool P

Bioelectromagnetics. 30(2):100-113, 2009

Those involved: Furubayashi T, Ushiyama A, Terao Y, Mizuno Y, Shirasawa K, Pongpaibool P, Simba AY, Wake K, Nishikawa M, Miyawaki K, Yasuda A, Uchiyama M, Yamashita HK, Masuda H, Hirota S, Takahashi M, Okano T, Inomata-Terada S, Sokejima S, Maruyama E, Watanabe S, Taki M, Ohkubo C, Ugawa Y.

To investigate possible health effects of mobile phone use, we conducted a double-blind, cross-over provocation study to confirm whether subjects with mobile phone related symptoms (MPRS) are more susceptible than control subjects to the effect of electromagnetic fields (EMF) emitted from base stations. We sent questionnaires to 5,000 women and obtained 2,472 valid responses from possible candidates; from these, we recruited 11 subjects with MPRS and 43 controls.

There were four EMF exposure conditions, each of which lasted 30 min: continuous, intermittent, and sham exposure with and without noise. Subjects were exposed to EMF of 2.14 GHz, 10 V/m (W-CDMA), in a shielded room to simulate whole-body exposure to EMF from base stations, although the exposure strength we used was higher than that commonly received from base stations.

We measured several psychological and cognitive parameters pre- and post-exposure, and monitored autonomic functions. Subjects were asked to report on their perception of EMF and level of discomfort during the experiment. The MPRS group did not differ from the controls in their ability to detect exposure to EMF; nevertheless they consistently experienced more discomfort, regardless of whether or not they were actually exposed to EMF, and despite the lack of significant changes in their autonomic functions.

Thus, the two groups did not differ in their responses to real or sham EMF exposure according to any psychological, cognitive or autonomic assessment.

In conclusion, we found no evidence of any causal link between hypersensitivity symptoms and exposure to EMF from base stations.

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