THURSDAY, March 15 (HealthDay News) -- In experiments involving mice, fetal exposure to cellphone radiation appeared linked to symptoms in offspring that resemble attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in human children, Yale researchers report.
Moreover, these problems with attention, hyperactivity and memory continued when the mice became adults and were worse the longer they were exposed to cellphone radiation in the womb, the researchers said.
"The hypothesis was that the developing brain might be more susceptible to these types of insults," said senior researcher Dr. Hugh Taylor, a professor and chief of the division of reproductive endocrinology and infertility in the department of obstetrics, gynecology & reproductive sciences.
"We found they seem to have behavioral changes like ADHD. I don't want to sensationalize this -- mice don't have ADHD -- but they had problems with memory, impulsiveness and hyperactivity," he explained.
There have been studies in humans that correlate the amount of time pregnant women spend on a cellphone with their children's ADHD, Taylor added.
"But, these studies were largely dismissed because there are many other things that correlate with cellphone use," he said. "This study is the first one that shows that there is a cause-and effect-relationship," at least in rodents, he said.
However, while studies involving animals can be useful, experts note that they frequently fail to produce similar results in humans.
The findings cannot therefore be directly extrapolated to women, but they do indicate that cellphone exposure during pregnancy may have effects, Taylor said. "We need to start thinking about how much is safe in humans and limit that exposure," he said.
"I think we need to be careful about radio-frequency exposures in pregnant women," he said. "The radiation may have consequences for the
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