(Health Secrets) As reported recently in the Environmental Health Trust’s newsletter, cell phones have now been linked to erectile dysfunction (ED). While numerous studies have shown that cell phone radiation leads to human sperm death, damage and decreased fertility, the new report of increased erectile dysfunction is sending shock waves through the men’s health community.
Erectile dysfunction is the inability to attain or maintain a penile erection sufficient for successful sexual intercourse, and is a very common clinical condition that can affect up to 50% of men over 40 years old. Among the known risk factors for ED are diabetes mellitus, hypertension, obesity and hypercholesterolemia.
The Damning Results of the Preliminary Study
In the preliminary study published last year in the Central European Journal of Urology, medical teams in Austria and Egypt found that men who carried switched-on cell phones for longer periods of time had a notably greater incidence of ED than men who carried switched-on phones for lesser periods of time.
For the study, the researchers recruited 20 men complaining of erectile dysfunction (ED) for at least six months (Group A), and another group of 10 healthy men with no complaints of ED (Group B). According to the researchers, there was no significant difference between either group regarding age, weight, height, smoking, total testosterone or exposure to other known sources of radiation.
All men completed the German version of the Sexual Health Inventory for Men (SHIM) for evaluation of the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF), as well as another questionnaire designed by the study clinicians that assessed cell phone usage habits.
The men in the study who had erectile dysfunction carried switched-on cell phones for an average of 4.4 hours daily, whereas the men without erectile dysfunction averaged 1.8 hours.
Since the preliminary study was small-scale, the researchers concluded that the results indicated a need for larger-scaled studies. However, if past history is an indicator, the cell phone industry can be expected to vigorously contest any negative conclusions and endeavor to produce results favorable to the industry.
The Expected Industry Resistance
In 2010 a large scale cell phone study which had given preliminary news releases indicating that it would report a link between health dangers and cell phones was somehow reversed at the last minute — over the objections of the lead researcher and other researchers — to absolve cell phones of being dangerous. Notably, significant funding for the study came from the cell phone industry itself.
When it Comes to Cell Phones, Distance is Your Friend
Cell phones have also been linked to cancers — especially brain cancers and cancers in the area adjacent to where cell phones are normally carried. A good rule of thumb when it comes to cell phones: Distance is your friend. In other words, the farther you keep a cell phone from your body, both when carrying it and when talking on it, the better. Likewise, do not keep a cell phone turned on and close by when sleeping.
The Environmental Health Trust (EHT) is a non-profit organization created by Dr. Devra Davis, PhD, MPH, to educate individuals, health professionals and communities about controllable environmental health risks and policy changes needed to reduce those risks. Dr. Davis is the author of noted books such as When Smoke Ran Like Water and The Secret History of the War on Cancer.
Currently, EHT focuses on raising awareness on the negative impacts of unsafe cell phone use and on performing cutting edge research on cell phone radiation.
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