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Childhood leukemia linked to residence close to high voltage power lines

In a research done by researchers of University of Oxford, UK, incidence// of childhood leukemia had been linked to proximity of residence to high voltage power lines.

Researchers had looked into the cases of 29081 children with cancer, of which 9700 children had leukemia. These medical records were matched for age, sex and place of residence for controls.

The results of the study indicate that when compared to children who lived at homes more than 600m from the overhead high voltage power line, those living between 200 and 600 m have a relative risk of 1.23, while those living within the 200m radius of the overhead power line have a relative risk of 1.69 of having leukemia.

Scientists have for a long time had said that living in extremely low frequency magnetic fields might be carcinogenic to health. Electric power systems do produce very low frequency electrical and magnetic fields. However there had been no concrete evidence till date of the possible associations.

The researchers of the new study, which is published in the new issue of British Medical Journal, say that there are no possible reasons they have been able to establish linking the high incidence of leukemia in children and close proximity to the high voltage power line, in spite of the study results.
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