Send to

Choose Destination
Radiat Res. 2018 May;189(5):541-547. doi: 10.1667/RR14952.1. Epub 2018 Mar 16.

Estimates of Environmental Exposure to Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields and Risk of Lymphoma Subtypes.

Author information

a   Departments of Medical Sciences and Public Health.
c   EPICOOP, Cagliari, Italy.
d   Regional Agency for Environmental Protection of Sardinia (ARPAS), Cagliari, Italy.
b   Biomedical Sciences, University of Cagliari, Cagliari, Italy.
e   A. Businco Oncology Hospital, Cagliari, Italy.


We investigated the association between environmental exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) and risk of lymphoma subtypes in a case-control study comprised of 322 patients and 444 individuals serving as controls in Sardinia, Italy in 1998-2004. Questionnaire information included the self-reported distance of the three longest held residential addresses from fixed radio-television transmitters and mobile phone base stations. We georeferenced the residential addresses of all study subjects and obtained the spatial coordinates of mobile phone base stations. For each address within a 500-meter radius from a mobile phone base station, we estimated the RF-EMF intensity using predictions from spatial models, and we performed RF-EMF measurements at the door in the subset of the longest held addresses within a 250-meter radius. We calculated risk of lymphoma and its major subtypes associated with the RF-EMF exposure metrics with unconditional logistic regression, adjusting by age, gender and years of education. In the analysis of self-reported data, risk associated with residence in proximity (within 50 meters) to fixed radio-television transmitters was likewise elevated for lymphoma overall [odds ratio = 2.7, 95% confidence interval = 1.5-4.6], and for the major lymphoma subtypes. With reference to mobile phone base stations, we did not observe an association with either the self-reported, or the geocoded distance from mobile phone base stations. RF-EMF measurements did not vary by case-control status. By comparing the self-reports to the geocoded data, we discovered that the cases tended to underestimate the distance from mobile phone base stations differentially from the controls ( P = 0.073). The interpretation of our findings is compromised by the limited study size, particularly in the analysis of the individual lymphoma subtypes, and the unavailability of the spatial coordinates of radio-television transmitters. Nonetheless, our results do not support the hypothesis of a link between environmental exposure to RF-EMF from mobile phone base stations and risk of lymphoma subtypes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for BioOne
Loading ...
Support Center