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Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
Herbal Remedy Could Halt Peanut Allergy
New Spray Could Benefit Cystic Fibrosis Patients
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Quit Smoking the Holistic Way
Soybean Chemicals May Reduce Effects of Menopause
Ginger Can Ease Nausea From Chemotherapy Treatments
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
BONES & JOINTS
In Elderly Women, Hip Fractures Often Follow Arm Breaks
A Winning Strategy to Beat Spring Sporting Injuries
Study Shows Exercise Shields Against Osteoporosis
CANCER
Bitter Melon Extract May Slow, Stop Breast Cancer
Many Ignore Symptoms of Bladder Trouble
Some Spices Cut Cancer Risk That Comes With Grilled Burgers
CAREGIVING
Medication Errors Could Be Cut: Experts
Diabetes Epidemic Now Poses Challenges for Nursing Homes
Health Tip: Benefitting From Adult Day Care
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Bad Marriages Harder on Women's Health
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
Exercise Extends Life of Kidney Patients
COSMETIC
Get Sugared!.... Its a sweet choice for hair removal
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
DENTAL, ORAL
Mom's Vitamin D Levels Affect Baby's Dental Health
Scientists Find Gene for Tooth Enamel
Gum Care Helps Control Type 2 Diabetes and Its Complications
DIABETES
Americans Consuming More Sugary Beverages
Fructose-Sweetened Drinks Up Metabolic Syndrome Risk
Chamomile Tea May Ward Off Diabetes Damage
DIET, NUTRITION
Eating in America Still Unhealthy
Diet, Exercise May Slow Kidney Disease Progression
Breakfast Eggs Keep Folks on Diet
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Fertilizer Ban Makes a Difference
Cats Can Trigger Eczema in Some Infants
Controversial Chemical Lingers Longer in the Body
EYE CARE, VISION
Gene-Transfer Proves Safe for Vision Problem
FDA Goes After Unapproved Eye Washes, Skin Ointments
Kids Who Spend More Time Outdoors Have Better Vision
FITNESS
Football Can Shrink Players
Research Confirms How Valuable A Healthy Lifestyle Can Be
Exercise Helps Reduce Falls in Young and Old
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Intestinal Bacteria Trigger Immune Response
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
New Guidelines Issued for Management of IBS
GENERAL HEALTH
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
Healthy Living Adds Years to Life
Living Alone Increases Odds of Developing Dementia
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
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Subway Defibrillators Save Lives
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
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HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Too Much Red Meat May Shorten Life Span
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
How Weight Loss Can Help the Heart
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Bacterial Infections May Succumb to Honey
Grapefruit Compound Inhibits Hepatitis C Virus
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
INFERTILITY
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KID'S HEALTH
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Mom's Extra Pregnancy Pounds May Raise Child's Heart Risks
Don't Leave Your Kids In The Car !
MEN'S HEALTH
Countdown to Hair Loss
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Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Daily dose of beet juice promotes brain health in older adults
Most Depressed Teens Don't Get Treatment
Green Spaces Boost the Body and the Mind
PAIN
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Calcium Supplements Cut Blood Lead Levels During Pregnancy
Before Conceiving, Take Folic Acid for One Full Year
Pregnant Women Exposed To Certain Pollutants Could Lower Childs IQ
SENIORS
Tai Chi and Qigong Offer Many Health Benefits: Review
Protein Deposits May Show Up Before Memory Problems Occur, Study Says
Community Exercise Programs Boost Seniors' Strength
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Active Young Women Need Calcium, Vitamin D
Soy May Not Lead to Denser Breasts
Supplements Might Reduce Breast Cancer Risk
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Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors

(HealthDay News) -- The latest study focusing on a possible cell phone-brain tumor connection finds a weak potential link between the two.

A review of existing research on the topic, published online Oct. 13 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, discerned no overall link. But when the spotlight was turned on only the more methodologically rigorous studies, a potentially harmful association was found.

Combined with similarly murky conclusions from earlier research, this leaves the world's four billion cell phone users with no clear indication of what risk, if any, they are taking when they converse on the go.

"We cannot make any definitive conclusions about this," said one expert, Dr. Deepa Subramaniam, director of the Brain Tumor Center at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center in Washington, D.C. "But this study, in addition to all the previous studies, continues to leave lingering doubt as to the potential for increased risk. So, one more time, after all these years, we don't have a clear-cut answer."

"What makes me worry," she stated, "is that the higher quality studies [seen here] did indeed show an association."

Joel Moskowitz, the study's senior author, said that "clearly there is risk." He's director of the Center for Family and Community Health at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health.

"I would not allow children to use a cell phone, or I at least would require them to use a separate headset," Moskowitz said. "It seems fairly derelict of us as a society or as a planet to just disseminate this technology to the extent that we have without doing a whole lot more research of the potential harms and how to protect against those harms. Clearly, we need to learn a whole lot more about this technology."

Some in the technology industry disagree.

"The peer-reviewed scientific evidence has overwhelmingly indicated that wireless devices do not pose a public health risk," John Walls, vice president of public affairs for CTIA-The Wireless Association, said in a prepared statement.

"In addition, there is no known mechanism for microwave energy within the limits established by the [U.S. Federal Communications Commission] to cause any adverse health effects," he said. "That is why the leading global heath organizations such as the American Cancer Society, [U.S.] National Cancer Institute, World Health Organization and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration all have concurred that wireless devices are not a public health risk."

For the new study, Moskowitz and his fellow researchers in South Korea searched medical bases for the keywords "mobile phones," "cellular phones," "cordless phones" and "tumors" or "cancer." They included 23 case-control studies, involving 37,916 total participants, in their final analysis.

When the studies were pooled, no risk was seen between mobile phone use and brain tumors, either benign or malignant. But a subgroup of studies that employed more rigorous methodology -- most conducted by the same research team in Sweden -- reported a harmful effect, whereas a set of less rigorous studies -- most funded by an industry consortium -- found a protective effect.

Specifically, the more robust studies found that using a mobile phone for a decade or longer resulted in an 18 percent increased risk for developing a brain tumor.

Some studies also showed that brain tumors were more likely to appear on the side of the brain where the cell phone was used.

According to the American Cancer Society, nearly 21,000 malignant brain or spinal cord tumors are diagnosed in adults in the U.S. each year, while 3,800 such tumors are diagnosed in children.

Moskowitz also believes that there's potential for harm to other areas of the body -- the genitals, for example -- when the phone is carried in a pocket.

With so many people worldwide using cell phones, even a small risk could translate into many illnesses and deaths, he said.

"We need to do a whole lot more research because the stakes are really high and there seems to be suggestive evidence that you better be careful about this, especially in children, who have developing tissue and smaller brain and skull sizes," Moskowitz warned.

Subramaniam seemed to agree.

"I do encourage people to use the speaker phone or a hands-free device if they can, and I definitely do not encourage children to use cell phones because then there's a much longer lifetime risk of exposure," she said.

"In my opinion," she said, "the question remains unsettled -- and unsettled always carries with it likelihood that we might find an association."

A report last year from the National Research Council, the main operating agency of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering, and compiled at the request of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, called for more research into the risks posed by long-term cell phone use, rather than the more commonly studied short-term risks. It urged that such research focus on the health of children, pregnant women and fetuses as well as workers subject to high occupational exposure.

SOURCES: Deepa Subramaniam, M.D., director, Brain Tumor Center, Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, D.C.; Joel Moskowitz, Ph.D., director, Center for Family and Community Health, School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley; prepared statement, John Walls, vice president, public affairs, CTIA-The Wireless Association, Washington, D.C.; Oct. 13, 2009, Journal of Clinical Oncology, online Published on: October 13, 2009