Second study puts a smile on our dial

There is no link between mobile phones and brain cancer across all age groups, according to a statement released by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) this week.

Criticism followed an earlier study of mobile phones and brain cancer rates in Australians aged 20-59 between 1982 on the basis that the researchers hadn’t also included the over 60s, a group with the highest incidence of brain tumours.

Following the publication of the original study in 2018, the researchers from Monash University and the University of Wollongong, in partnership with the University of Auckland, conducted further analysis to assess whether there has been an increase in the rate of brain cancer in Australians aged 60 and over during the same time period.

There were 20,300 eligible brain cancer cases aged 60 plus that were diagnosed between 1982 and 2013 and, having completed that analysis, study author Dr Ken Karipidis said, “Our analysis shows that the rate of brain cancer in people in the 60 plus age group follows a similar pattern as the other age groups we looked at.

“It shows that there has been no increase in brain cancer rates in Australia that can be attributed to mobile phone use.”

ARPANSA says this secondary study makes an important contribution to the body of knowledge examining links between mobile phone use and brain cancer.

The British Medical Journal Open has also published a letter outlining the findings from this additional analysis.

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