Mobile phones may be to blame for cancer surge

by Richard Shears in Sydney (Daily Mail newspaper Jan 6 1998)

DOCTORS suspect mobile phones are behind a huge increase in brain tumours in Australia.

Over the ten years that the phones became popular; brain tumour cases soared by more than 60 per cent in women and by 50 per cent in men, according to a study.

The disturbing results of the -research have prompted cancer specialist Dr Andrew Davidson to ask the biggest phone company Down Under, Teistra to co-operate in 'research to determine whether their is a link between mobiles and the disease.


Studies in Australia and the U.S. showed that mobile phones sent radiation into the brains of mice and rats, causing cancer; short-term memory loss and lapses in concentration.


Following the death of one mobile phone user American heart surgeon --- Dr Dean Rittmann - his family has started legal action against the manufacturen They claim his illness was caused by radiation emitted from his phone.



The World Health organisation has already called for more international research into whether the phones might cause diseases including cancer.


Dr Davidson, who is based at Fremantle Hospital, says Western Australia's cancer registry shows brain tumours in men and women increased significantly over the period during which mobile phones became popular.

The frequency of tumours in very 100 000 people was 6.4 for men and 4.0 for women in 1982, rising to 9.6 for men and 6.5 for women a decade later.

The assumption is that the rise is related to the use of analogue phones in the late1980s,' said Dr Davidson. He added that there was evidence from around the country that brain cancers were on the Increase.

They had risen from six to eight in every 100,000 People between 1982 and I 992. The Australian government has already launched a five year study into the potent health dangers from mobile phones and related equipment including transmission towers.

Health minister Michael Wooldridge said their he was no substantial evidence so far of health dangers from mobile ones but agreed that more search was needed.

Dr Davidson's findings are expected to be studied by the Austialian government. His report was published as fears over health risks among mobile phone usrs grow around the world.

Many are looking at gadgets which claim to reduce the risk of supposedly harmful microwaves reaching the brain. They include a shield that fits around part of the phone aerial and an earplug and small microphone which allows the user to keep the aerial away from the head.

Coghill Research: