Potential new risk from mobile phones

Status: Partially true, partially fake
image Dipankar Mitra sent me this graphic which is circulating via email, warning of a "Potential new risk from mobile phones." He notes that it's accompanied by a caption that reads:

Please use left ear while using cell (mobile), because if you use the right one it will affect brain directly. This is a true fact from Apollo medical team. Please forward to all your well wishers

He asks, "Do let me know if it is real or hoax..."

Well, the caption is definitely a hoax. I have no idea what the Apollo medical team is. (When I google the term I just pull up references to this email.) And the suggestion that it would somehow be safer to use your left ear rather than your right is absurd.

However, the graphic and the information in it are not a hoax. The illustration was created by the Graphic News agency back in 2002. (Click 'Graphic Search' on their site, then do a keyword search for the term 'blood-brain barrier', and you'll pull up the graphic.) The information it describes comes from a study published in the May 2002 issue of the scientific journal Differentiation. Researcher Darius Leszcynski did find that when human endothelial cells were exposed to the maximum level of radiation allowed under international safety standards for mobile phones, a stress response could be observed in the cells. But he also noted that most mobile phones emit much less radiation than the levels used in the experiment. So there's probably no imminent danger of damaging your blood-brain barrier by using a mobile phone.

Email Hoaxes Technology

Posted on Tue Jan 10, 2006


Why would it be better to irradiate the left side of your brain than the right side?

I guess it might depend on which abilities you most want to save; for example, artistic ability is largely on the right side of most people's brains, and language is mainly on the left side of most people's brains (unless you speak a tonal language like Chinese, in which case the story's more complicated).
Posted by Big Gary in the northern hemisphere  on  Tue Jan 10, 2006  at  04:55 PM
Apollo probably refers to a chain of speciality hospitals in India and also Sri Lanka
Posted by PrasTil  on  Wed Jan 11, 2006  at  05:03 AM
I think the forwarder just mistaken the picture showing the man using his right ear as "harmful if use right ear" and started this misleading forward email.
Posted by Germ  on  Sat Feb 04, 2006  at  11:24 PM
yes indeed Apollo is a chain of hospital in india and with a branch in sri lanka...

i also got this fwd with the caption just wanted to see how true this was.
Posted by fatboy  on  Tue Feb 28, 2006  at  06:51 AM
i dont know if this mail is true..but Apollo hospitals do exist..one of the most famous( and top quality) hospitals in India....
Posted by Larry  on  Sun Mar 12, 2006  at  09:59 PM
Here is an actual excerpt from the FINNISH RADIATION AND NUCLEAR SAFETY AUTHORITY credited at the bottom of the diagram ... "Radio waves at the radiation level of mobile phones may increase the permeability of the so-called blood-brain barrier...Possible changes are, however, minimal and disappear quickly when the radiation stops...The occurrence falls within the realm of physiological fluctuation and is not known to be harmful."

URL: http://www.stuk.fi/sateilytietoa/sateilyn_terveysvaikutukset/en_GB/matkapuhelimet/

This is definitely a hoax.
Posted by Glenda  on  Tue May 30, 2006  at  08:22 PM
If it is true that using cell (mobile)damage the brain, it is not so absurd to think that using the right ear affect directly the brain, because through the right ear all the informations arrive directly to the left temporal brain (where we find the area of language). I believe they mean the speed of diffusion of the Hertzian or radio/sound waves entered in the brain through the right ear is dangerous.
Posted by Evelyne Disseau  on  Wed Oct 03, 2007  at  02:29 AM
cool news. must imform too all people
Posted by hussain  on  Sat Feb 09, 2008  at  02:25 PM
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