Acoustic Neuroma and Cell Phone Use
saferemr.com, 26 April 2017
Studies that report evidence of increased risk of acoustic neuroma associated with long-term cell phone use
Nine peer-reviewed studies, including one cohort study, have found evidence that long-term cell phone use is associated with increased risk of acoustic neuroma, a tumor on the nerve from the ear to the brain.
Benson et al, 2013 (acoustic neuroma) - UK Million Women cohort study
For acoustic neuroma, there was an increase in risk with long term use vs never use (10+ years: RR = 2.46, 95% CI = 1.07-5.64, P = 0.03), the risk increasing with duration of use (trend among users, P = 0.03).
Moon et al, 2014
Vestibular schwannomas (VSs) grow in the region where the energy from mobile phone use is absorbed. We examined the associations of VSs with mobile phone use. This study included 119 patients who had undergone surgical tumor removal. We used two approaches in this investigation. First, a case-control study for the association of mobile phone use and incidence of VSs was conducted. Both cases and controls were investigated with questions based on INTERPHONE guidelines. Amount of mobile phone use according to duration, daily amount, and cumulative hours were compared between two groups. We also conducted a case-case study. The location and volume of the tumors were investigated by MRI. Associations between the estimated amount of mobile phone use and tumor volume and between the laterality of phone use and tumor location were analyzed. In a case-control study, the odds ratio (OR) of tumor incidence according to mobile phone use was 0.956. In the case-case study, tumor volume and estimated cumulative hours showed a strong correlation (r(2) = 0.144, p = 0.002), and regular mobile phone users showed tumors of a markedly larger volume than those of non-regular users (p < 0.001). When the analysis was limited to regular users who had serviceable hearing, laterality showed a strong correlation with tumor side (OR = 4.5). We found that tumors may coincide with the more frequently used ear of mobile phones and tumor volume that showed strong correlation with amount of mobile phone use, thus there is a possibility that mobile phone use may affect tumor growth.
Hardell et al, 2013 (acoustic neuroma)
We previously conducted a case-control study of acoustic neuroma. Subjects of both genders aged 20-80 years, diagnosed during 1997-2003 in parts of Sweden, were included, and the results were published. We have since made a further study for the time period 2007-2009 including both men and women aged 18-75 years selected from throughout the country. These new results for acoustic neuroma have not been published to date. Similar methods were used for both study periods. In each, one population-based control, matched on gender and age (within five years), was identified from the Swedish Population Registry. Exposures were assessed by a self-administered questionnaire supplemented by a phone interview. Since the number of acoustic neuroma cases in the new study was low we now present pooled results from both study periods based on 316 participating cases and 3,530 controls. Unconditional logistic regression analysis was performed, adjusting for age, gender, year of diagnosis and socio-economic index (SEI). Use of mobile phones of the analogue type gave odds ratio (OR) = 2.9, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 2.0-4.3, increasing with >20 years latency (time since first exposure) to OR = 7.7, 95% CI = 2.8-21. Digital 2G mobile phone use gave OR = 1.5, 95% CI = 1.1-2.1, increasing with latency >15 years to an OR = 1.8, 95% CI = 0.8-4.2. The results for cordless phone use were OR = 1.5, 95% CI = 1.1-2.1, and, for latency of >20 years, OR = 6.5, 95% CI = 1.7-26. Digital type wireless phones (2G and 3G mobile phones and cordless phones) gave OR = 1.5, 95% CI = 1.1-2.0 increasing to OR = 8.1, 95% CI = 2.0-32 with latency >20 years. For total wireless phone use, the highest risk was calculated for the longest latency time >20 years: OR = 4.4, 95% CI = 2.2-9.0. Several of the calculations in the long latency category were based on low numbers of exposed cases. Ipsilateral use resulted in a higher risk than contralateral for both mobile and cordless phones. OR increased per 100 h cumulative use and per year of latency for mobile phones and cordless phones, though the increase was not statistically significant for cordless phones. The percentage tumour volume increased per year of latency and per 100 h of cumulative use, statistically significant for analogue phones. This study confirmed previous results demonstrating an association between mobile and cordless phone use and acoustic neuroma.
Hardell et al, 2013
Regarding acoustic neuroma ipsilateral mobile phone use in the latency group ≥10 years gave OR=1.81, 95% CI=0.73-4.45. For ipsilateral cumulative use ≥1640h OR=2.55, 95% CI=1.50-4.40 was obtained. Also use of cordless phones increased the risk for glioma and acoustic neuroma in the Hardell group studies.
Interphone Study Group, 2011
The odds ratio (OR) of acoustic neuroma with ever having been a regular mobile phone user was 0.85 (95% confidence interval 0.69-1.04). The OR for ≥10 years after first regular mobile phone use was 0.76 (0.52-1.11). There was no trend of increasing ORs with increasing cumulative call time or cumulative number of calls, with the lowest OR (0.48 (0.30-0.78)) observed in the 9th decile of cumulative call time. In the 10th decile (≥1640 h) of cumulative call time, the OR was 1.32 (0.88-1.97); there were, however, implausible values of reported use in those with ≥1640 h of accumulated mobile phone use. With censoring at 5 years before the reference date the OR for ≥10 years after first regular mobile phone use was 0.83 (0.58-1.19) and for ≥1640 h of cumulative call time it was 2.79 (1.51-5.16), but again with no trend in the lower nine deciles and with the lowest OR in the 9th decile. In general, ORs were not greater in subjects who reported usual phone use on the same side of the head as their tumour than in those who reported it on the opposite side, but it was greater in those in the 10th decile of cumulative hours of use.
Hardell et al, 2009
For acoustic neuroma, the highest OR was found for ipsilateral use and >10 year latency, for mobile phone OR=3.0, 95% CI=1.4-6.2 and cordless phone OR=2.3, 95% CI=0.6-8.8.
Hardell et al, 2006
Regarding acoustic neuroma analogue cellular phones yielded odds ratio (OR) = 2.9, 95 % confidence interval (CI) = 2.0-4.3, digital cellular phones OR = 1.5, 95 % CI = 1.1-2.1 and cordless phones OR = 1.5, 95 % CI = 1.04-2.0.
Schoemaker et al, 2005
Risk of a tumour on the same side of the head as reported phone use was raised for use for 10 years or longer (OR = 1.8, 95% CI: 1.1-3.1). The study suggests that there is no substantial risk of acoustic neuroma in the first decade after starting mobile phone use. However, an increase in risk after longer term use or after a longer lag period could not be ruled out.
Lonn et al, 2004
The overall odds ratio for acoustic neuroma associated with regular mobile phone use was 1.0 (95% confidence interval = 0.6-1.5). Ten years after the start of mobile phone use the estimates relative risk increased to 1.9 (0.9-4.1); when restricting to tumors on the same side of the head as the phone was normally used, the relative risk was 3.9 (1.6-9.5).