February 18, 2008
Heavy mobile phone use may be linked to an increased risk of cancer of the salivary gland, a study suggests.
Researchers looked at 500 Israelis who had developed the condition and compared their mobile phone usage with 1,300 healthy controls.
Those who had used the phone against one side of the head for several hours a day were 50% more likely to have developed a salivary gland tumour.
The research appeared in The American Journal of Epidemiology.
Numerous studies have focused on the risk of tumours among those who use mobile phones, and overwhelmingly found no increased cancer risk.
But researchers at Tel Aviv University say these have tended to focus on brain tumours, and often did not include long-term users.
Cancer of the salivary gland is a very rare condition. Of the 230,000 cases of cancer diagnosed in the UK for instance annually, only 550 relate to this area.