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  • Writer's pictureShruti GOCHHWAL

The Cell Phones and Brain Tumor Connection

Although the use of mobile phones is popular, there is a lot of anxiety and paranoia that a considerable amount of people face when it comes to excessive cell phone use.

Some people assume the constant use of could slowly damage the brain. The terms “disintegrate”, ” fry” and “cook” have been used to describe how people think cell phones damage the brain cells. What Is a Brain Tumor? A brain tumor is developed when some specific brain cells begin to multiply rapidly and uncontrollably. Usually, cell division is followed by cell specialization, a process where cells become functional for a specific purpose.

In case of brain tumors, these cells do not undergo specialization and form a mass of required cells known as a tumor.

They are dangerous as they press on important nerves and brain cells, and could possibly block neurotransmitters for neurological communication as well.

girl talking on phone

Credit : pexel Caption: Can cell phones cause brain damage and tumor?

There are 2 contradictory thoughts here. Let’s look at both.

For: Are We Being Overparanoid?

The main reasons why the use of cell phones has become a large concern among the population is due to its emissions of microwaves and radiowaves.

Microwaves are known to have heating properties. It is the same wave used in the microwave supply in your kitchen that you use to heat food.

Based on this school of thought, it’s a misconception that the emission of these waves from cell phones could damage the brain and lead to tumor formation.

But the levels of emissions are extremely low and not sufficient enough to cause any damage.

Another reason that creates anxiety in some people is the location of cell phone towers. A lot of people assume that the closer one is to the tower, the stronger will be the connection and emission and hence it could damage brain cells.

This is simply not true as the closer one is to a tower, the lesser waves are needed to be transmitted in order for the radiations to reach the tower. Hence, if one is in the vicinity of phone towers, their chances of brain tumor would be considerably reduced.

But despite all these reasons supporting the fact that cell phones are not dangerous, WHO concluded that cell phones could be a possible cause of brain tumor. Which brings us to the contradictory study.


Swedish Study : Analysis and Experimental Research        Credit: pexel

The Swedish Study: A Contradictory Thought

According to this study, people who use cell phones are 30% more likely to develop a common type of malignant form of brain cancer known as gliomas. In addition, people who use cell phones over 25 years have also shown an increased risk.

However, another successful Swedish study contradicts this previous one.

Researchers concluded that if the use of cell phones have increased over the years, then statistically, the number of brain tumor cases should also increase. Surprisingly, after thorough analysis the rates seemed to be steady, decreasing and 40% lesser than predicted.


Credit: pexel Caption: Cell phones are highly available

Problems With the Studies

The introduction of cell phones is relatively new, it was introduced around the 1980s and it’s usage became widely popular only in the 2000s.

Due to this, there has been no sufficient amount of research to confirm that cell phones could cause brain tumors.

Another problem that arises during experimental studies is the rareness of brain tumors. It is almost impossible to predict if a person could develop a tumor or not. Due to this experiments have to be carried out on a large number of people to increase the probability and likelihood. This method is highly impractical and time consuming with no grantees.

Moreover, it is impossible to study the effects of radiation by comparing a group of individuals who use cell phones and a group that does not as almost every person has access to a cell phone. In fact, there are more phones than people in the world.

This makes research and experiments difficult and almost impossible to conclude.


As of now, the theory that cell phone radiation causes brain tumors is unlikely as the majority of studies lean more towards the success of proving that these radiations are not linked to brain tumors.

However, it is also established that these experimental studies are neither definitive nor conclusive due to the common possession of mobile phones and rareness in the occurrence of brain tumors. This is why WHO classified cell phones as only a “possible” threat and the research is still ongoing.

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