Even with my current job as a systems analyst, a software developer/programmer, I felt a need to document my learning, so I have something to always look back to, especially with my advancing age. But no, I'm not that old yet...
Image via Wikipedia(WASHINGTON) -- A government test used to measure the radiation people absorb from their cellphonesmight underestimate the levels to which most adults and children are exposed, according to a group of doctors and researchers whose stated mission is to promote awareness of environmental health risks they believe may be linked to cancer.
The reason for the discrepancy, the group says, is that the process to determine radiation exposure from cellphones involves the use of a mannequin model that they say approximates a 6-foot-2, 220-pound person. Because the model represents only about three percent of the population, the authors report, the test will not accurately predict the radiation exposure of the other 97 percent of the population, including children. The group is pushing for a new testing system to measure radiation exposure in a wider range of consumers.
"The standard for cellphones has been developed based on old science and old models and old assumptions about how we use cellphones, and that's why they need to change," said Dr. Devra Davis, former senior adviser in the Department of Health and Human Services under the Clinton administration and one of the report's authors.
A different study cited in the report says a child's bone marrow absorbs 10 times the radiation as an adult. The authors also raise questions about long-term side effects, such as infertility in males who carry phones in their pockets, an exposure unaccounted for in the traditional certification process.
The authors suggest an alternative certification process, one that uses MRI scans to test real humans, including children and pregnant women. Such an approach would provide exposure data on a "Virtual Family," representing all ages, the authors say.
The U.S. government has had no specific comment on the report. The cellphone industry group CTIA-The Wireless Association said that because members "are not scientists or researchers on this topic," the news media should contact experts instead.
But whether the low level of radiation from cellphones actually causes cancer is a question that has yet to be answered. "No scientific evidence currently establishes a definite link between [cellphones] and cancer or other illnesses," the FCC says on its website.