Exposure to Radiofrequency Radiation Increases Risk of Breast Cancer
Electromagnetic frequency is categorized in 2 types, ionizing and non-ionizing. Ionizing has higher frequencies which exhibits enough energy to remove electrons from molecules. This study looked at radiofrequencies, (100kHz – 3 GHz) emanates from cell phones, wireless computers, radios, cell towers, and other wifi based technologies. Despite numerous studies, the WHO classifies it as possibly carcinogenic to humans. Prior to this, numerous studies have shown radiofrequency exposure is associated with the accumulation of reactive oxygen species (increasing inflammation) by disrupting the mitochondria.
Specifically, it swells and ruptures the outer membrane of the mitochondria’s releasing apoptosis-inducing factors. This has been shown to be the leading hypothesis found in numerous studies and this study specifically was the first meta-analysis aiming to evaluate the association between radiofrequency and risk of breast cancer.
After measuring inclusion and exclusion criteria, researchers used a total of 8 studies split between Norway, Sweden, Korea, Israel, & Turkey between 1996 – 2013 that were cohort or case-controlled studies. They involved exposure from occupation, residential, proximity to antennas/radio transmitters, electrical appliances, and mobile phones. In total the subjects were homogenously groups between male and female around various age groups. In all of the studies, they found there was a significant association between exposure to radiofrequency and mobile phones with a confidence interval of 95%.
It was noted that most of the individuals tested positive were above the age of 50, and this was attributed to the fact that aging results in the decline of physiological organ functioning. However, the rates associated with younger women in occupational groups like radiologists’ dentists, and nurses was similar to that of females that were not in these groups, but had exposure to cell phone radiation.
Interestingly they found that melatonin (a hydroxyl radical scavenger) had decreased expression in randomized controlled trials as an effect of iPads and iPhone WIFI exposure. Therefore, radiofrequency by mobile phones or electric devices can induce DNA damage and suppress melatonin production. This suppression also has been shown to increase estrogen production as well. In conclusion, the authors said individuals who use electric appliances including mobile phones and computers which is everyone – should have self-protective strategies against radiofrequencies.
Shih YW, O'Brien AP, Hung CS, Chen KH, Hou WH, Tsai HT. Exposure to radiofrequency radiation increases the risk of breast cancer: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Exp Ther Med. 2021;21(1):23. doi:10.3892/etm.2020.9455