A Report on Non-Ionizing Radiation

American Cancer Society: Microwave News Article Archive (2004 - )

May 31, 2016

Senior managers at the National Toxicology Program (NTP) released the preliminary results of their cell phone radiation study late last week. They were so concerned about the elevated rates of two types of cancer among exposed rats that they felt an immediate public alert was warranted. They considered it unwise to wait for the results to wend their way into a journal sometime next year. Not surprisingly, the NTP report generated worldwide media attention.

There were some startling reactions. Both the American Cancer Society (ACS) and Consumer Reports immediately shelved their long-held, wait-and-see positions. In a statement issued soon after the NTP’s press conference, Otis Brawley, ACS’ chief medical officer, called the NTP report “good science.” Consumer Reports said that the new study was “groundbreaking” and encouraged people to take simple precautions to limit their exposures.

However, much of the mainstream media saw it very differently. The Washington Post ran its story under the headline, “Do Cell Phones Cause Cancer? Don’t Believe the Hype.”

September 19, 2013

Based on four cases among women, aged 21 to 39. “[U]nlike the brain which is protected by the skull as well as a spatial distance from the cellular device, each patient here had direct contact between their device and their breast.” Open access paper from a team of California physicians. For a local TV news report featuring two of the authors of these case reports, click here [no longer available]. And here is the American Cancer Society’s outlook, posted in May 2014 [also no longer available]—about a decade ago, ACS’s Ted Gansler, who wrote this opinion, promoted the idea that any link...

February 9, 2009

Call it the end of an era. Motorola, which has by any measure been the dominant force in the RF health arena for more than 15 years, is stepping back from the fray. The field will never be quite the same again.

On Friday, February 13, Motorola will close down its RF research lab in Plantation, FL. C.K. Chou, Mark Douglas, Joe Elder, Joe Morrissey and their support staff have all lost their jobs. A few days later, Ken Joyner, another key player on RF regulatory affairs based in Australia, will leave Motorola after 12 years with the company.

July 29, 2008

On tonight's Larry King Live, Otis Brawley, the chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society, called for the release of the Interphone study on the possible cell phone-tumor link. Here's what he said, according to a "rush transcript" from CNN: "I think we're going to have to look at the Interphone Study very carefully. For those listeners who don't know, the Interphone Study is run by the World Health Organization of the United Nations. It's actually been completed for about two and a half years and the people who actually ran the study have yet to publish it. There's a lot of discussions going on amongst those scientists as to exactly what the data show. And it would be really nice if it were published, I must tell you." 

July 28, 2008

The University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute's alert continues to attract media interest. CNN's Larry King Live has scheduled a new show on "Cell Phone Dangers" for tomorrow (Tuesday) night. (The last one was on May 27.) Sources at CNN told us that the guest list now includes: Keith Black, a neurosurgeon at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, Otis Brawley, the chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society, Devra Davis of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Sanjay Gupta, CNN's chief medical correspondent, Paul Song, a radiation oncologist in Los Angeles and Ted Schwartz, a brain surgeon at the Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center in New York City. The line-up may change before air time. Black, Gupta and Schwartz were also on the May 27 show. 

July 25, 2008

At this writing, Google News has a list of some 900 articles on the cell phone health alert issued by the University of Pittsburgh a couple of days ago. The Post-Gazette, the hometown paper, broke the story on the same day (it got an advance copy), and though some newspapers like the Baltimore Sun ran their own write-ups, the vast majority relied on the Associated Press for their coverage.

July 23, 2008

One of the hallmarks of the cell phone health controversy has been the silence of the U.S. public health communities. No medical, consumer, environmental or labor group has called for precaution, or even for more research.

The American Cancer Society, for instance, has adopted a what-me-worry approach. Indeed, CTIA, the industry lobby group, routinely refers press inquiries about possible health impacts to the ACS.

May 29, 2008

Next-Up, the European activist group, has posted the entire Larry King Live show, "Cell Phones: Are They Dangerous?," on its Web site. Only the ads are missing. Click here to see the 44-minute video. A transcript is also available.

May 27, 2008

Larry King will devote tonight's show to a discussion on "Cell Phones: Are They Dangerous?" Among those scheduled to appear are Drs. Keith Black, the head of neurosurgery at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles, Sanjay Gupta, a neurosurgeon and CNN's chief medical correspondent, Vini Khurana, an Australian neurosurgeon (see our April 10 post), Louis Slesin, the editor of Microwave News, and Michael Thun of the American Cancer Society.

April 10, 2008

Vini Khurana hit the big time last week. The Australian neurosurgeon parlayed a 69-page literature review on cell phones and brain tumors into a spot on the U.S. NBC Nightly News. Call it the power of the sound bite.

August 3, 2007

The American Cancer Society is misleading the public —while alleging that Americans are perilously ill-informed about cancer risks. Thanks to the ACS, the front page of this week's Washington Post Health section tells the 30% of the population who believe that "cell phones cause cancer" that they are "wrong."

September 18, 2006

The Canadian Cancer Society is endorsing precautionary policies to limit human exposures to power line EMFs. "In the absence of 'hard science,' the society promotes the precautionary principle, which recognizes the value of taking common sense steps to prevent harm to human health or the environment," advises Barbara Kaminsky in a recent statement. South of the border, the American Cancer Society appears to be holding out for conclusive scientific evidence before suggesting anyone take action to limit EMF exposures. 

October 12, 2004

Mobile phones may present a cancer risk after all. Epidemiologists at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm have found that the phones can increase the incidence of acoustic neuromas, benign tumors of the auditory nerve. The nerve is exposed to radiation during the normal use of a cell phone.

Those who used mobile phones for at least ten years, had close to twice the risk of developing acoustic neuromas, according to a team led by Dr. Maria Feychting and Prof. Anders Ahlbom of the Karolinska’s Institute of Environmental Medicine. Ahlbom is the deputy director of institute.

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