Schlehofer B, Schlaefer K, Blettner M, Berg G, et al. (2007)

This paper reports results from the German part of the Interphone study. All patients with acoustic neuroma, aged 30-59 years, in the areas around Bielefeld, Heidelberg, Mainz, and Mannheim, were ascertained between October 2000 and October 2003. In the last 2 years of the study the age limit was extended to 69 years.

A total of 106 identified patients were identified. Of these 7 refused to participate, 2 died before the interview, and three were lost to follow-up. Controls were randomly selected from the compulsory population registries and were frequency-matched to cases according to gender, age, and regional distribution. Of the 368 controls identified, 202 agreed to participate. A post-hoc 1:2 matching was done at the end of the field work to adjust for the time lag in interviewing cases and controls. The exposure period of the controls was censored at the date of diagnosis of the matched case. Eight controls were not used in the matching and were excluded. The interviews included questions about cell phone use, and about exposure to RF-EMF, ionising radiation, and occupation related to loud noise. Information was also collected about the occurrence of specific diseases such as asthma, hay fever, eczema, hearing loss, and tinnitus.

Regular use of a cell phone resulted in an Odds Ratio (OR) of 0.67 (95 % CI 0.38-1-19). The risk did not increase with increasing number or duration of calls. There was no increased risk for ionising radiation. There were increased risks for hay fever (2.20; 95 % CI 1.09-4.45), and for exposure to persistent noise (2.31; CI 1.15-4.46).

These results are in accordance with most studies of cell phone use, and confirm other reports of the association of acoustic neuroma with exposure to noise or to hay fever.

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