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Comparison of measuring instruments for radiofrequency radiation from mobile telephones in epidemiological studies: Implications for exposure assessment


The debate on mobile telephone safety continues. Most epidemiological studies investigating health effects of radiofrequency (RF) radiation emitted by mobile phone handsets have been criticised for poor exposure assessment. Most of these studies relied on the historical reconstruction of participants’ phone use by questionnaires. Such exposure assessment methods are prone to recall bias resulting in misclassification that may lead to conflicting conclusions. Although there have been some studies using software-modified phones (SMP) for exposure assessment in the literature, until now there is no published work on the use of hardware modified phones (HMPs) or RF dosimeters for studies of mobile phones and health outcomes. We reviewed existing literature on mobile phone epidemiology with particular attention to exposure assessment methods used. Owing to the inherent limitations of these assessment methods, we suggest that the use of HMPs may show promise for more accurate exposure assessment of RF radiation from mobile phones.

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This work is supported by the Australian Centre for Radiofrequency Bio-effects Research (ACRBR) which is funded by a grant from the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia.

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Correspondence to Michael Abramson.

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Inyang, I., Benke, G., Mckenzie, R. et al. Comparison of measuring instruments for radiofrequency radiation from mobile telephones in epidemiological studies: Implications for exposure assessment. J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol 18, 134–141 (2008).

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  • radiofrequency radiation
  • dose phones
  • billing records
  • radiofrequency dosimeter
  • exposure misclassification
  • questionnaires

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