Experimental Studies with Humans

Human provocation studies have investigated mostly possible effect on the nervous system, including many cognitive and behavioral responses, in response to low-level RF fields emitted by mobile telephones near children as well as in adults. It is now generally accepted that there are no significant effects of cell phone usage or reasonable proximity to radiating antennas of base stations on them. Other investigated effects on pain, vision, hearing and vestibular function, as well as on the endocrine and cardiovascular systems, were mostly negative. Taste and olfaction have not been studied, so far. Even in studies that reported a mild effect, they were not considered as detrimental to health. However, their significance from long-term exposure could not be verified. Studies using functional imaging of the brain and deep infrared thermography have shown that there is no significant heating caused directly by RF exposure in the bone or brain.

In the so-called “RF hypersensitivity symptoms”, 4 to 5% of the population report being sensitive to RF fields, while some of these intolerant individuals report ill health and a number of distressing subjective symptoms during and after using a cell phone and from exposure to other radiofrequency-emitting devices, or being near an RF antenna site. These symptoms are quite nonspecific and are present in many diseases, such as cold and flu-like symptoms (headache, nausea, fatigue, muscle aches, malaise, etc.). However, several studies, systematic reviews and meta-analyses in the last 15 years have concluded that hypersensitivity and the observed symptoms have no correlation to RF exposure of individuals. There is presently no scientific basis for characterizing RF hypersensitivity as a medical syndrome.

One can conclude from human experimental studies that current science-based evidence points to there being no adverse effects in humans below thermal thresholds, no hazardous influences on the well-being and health status of users and non-users of cell phones and people living near base stations, and that no convincing evidence for adverse cognitive, behavioral and neurophysiological and other physiological effects exist.

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