UMTS Base Station-Like Exposure, Well Being and Cognitive Performance

Sabine J. Regel, Sonja Negovetic, Martin Röösli, Veronica Berdiñas, Jürgen Schuderer, Anke Huss, Urs Lott, Niels Kuster, and Peter Achermann, in Environmental Health Perspectives, Volume 114, Number 8, pp. 1270–1275, August 2006

The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of a UMTS base station signal on well being and cognitive function in humans and to validate the findings of the Dutch study (TNO-study, 2003) that showed an impairment in well being after UMTS exposure. Several improvements in design, methodology and exposure setup were realized in this study compared to the original TNO-study. Well being in both the investigated groups consisting of sensitive and non-sensitive males and females was not affected by either of the two conditions used (1 and 10 V/m) compared to sham exposure. Also, no consistent condition-induced effect on cognitive function could be observed and the subjects were not able to perceive field intensity better than expected by chance. Electrosensitive subjects, however, reported higher field strengths and more symptoms under all conditions, irrespective of actual exposure. In conclusion, the findings do not confirm the results reported in the TNO study. Other conclusions regarding, e.g., handset exposures or long-term chronic base station exposures on human health, cannot be drawn from the present data.

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