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Bioelectromagnetics. 2018 Feb;39(2):132-143. doi: 10.1002/bem.22095. Epub 2017 Nov 10.

IEI-EMF provocation case studies: A novel approach to testing sensitive individuals.

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Australian Centre for Electromagnetic Bioeffects Research.
School of Psychology, Illawarra Health & Medical Research Institute, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, Australia.
Two Fields Consulting, St Kilda, Australia.
Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
Centre for Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Stockholm County Council, Stockholm, Sweden.
King's College London, Department of Psychological Medicine, London, United Kingdom.
Department of Electronic Systems, Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, NTNU-Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway.


The etiology of Idiopathic Environmental Intolerance attributed to Electromagnetic Fields (IEI-EMF) is controversial. While the majority of studies have indicated that there is no relationship between EMF exposure and symptoms reported by IEI-EMF sufferers, concerns about methodological issues have been raised. Addressing these concerns, the present experiment was designed as a series of individual case studies to determine whether there is a relationship between radiofrequency-electromagnetic field (RF-EMF) exposure and an IEI-EMF individual's self-reported symptoms. Three participants aged 44-64 were tested during a series of sham and active exposure trials (2 open-label trials; 12 randomized, double-blind, counterbalanced trials), where symptom severity and exposure detection were scored using 100 mm visual analogue scales. The RF-EMF exposure was a 902-928 MHz spread spectrum digitally modulated signal with an average radiated power output of 1 W (0.3 W/m2 incident power density at the participant). In the double-blind trials, no significant difference in symptom severity or exposure detection was found for any of the participants between the two conditions. Belief of exposure strongly predicted symptom severity score for all participants. Despite accounting for several possible limitations, the present experiment failed to show a relationship between RF-EMF exposure and an IEI-EMF individual's symptoms. Bioelectromagnetics. 39:132-143, 2018.


electromagnetic fields; electromagnetic hypersensitivity; idiopathic environmental intolerance; radiofrequency

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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