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A study has found that cell phones cause sperm DNA damage, should we be worried?


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I have read a study that has found that cell phones are assositated with increased immature sperm amoung men:

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Lifestyle factors that were positively associated with percentage of immature sperms (high DNA stainability index) included: obesity and cell phone use for more than 10 years (P=0.02 and P=0.04, respectively).

I am wondering if this study warrents action, should we change how we use phones? I can only indetify one flaw with this study, and that is that it's population was from a fertility clinic. This seems like a selection bias as they are studying people who are already infertile (The study tried to account for this by only allowing those with normal sperm concentration to participate, however sperm concentration only makes up one of many factors that go into measuring fertility, this leads me to believe that they haven't accounted for the bias very well). I don't know how much of a bias this is, as they did measure the fertility of the population over time, and found that as time went on immature sperm (something that impares fertility) rose amoungst cell phone users, but it still seems biased and flawed.

What do you all think, is this a concerning study? Or is it one which is flawed and inconclusive? Here is a link that goes into a bit more detial about the study in question: https://www.emf-portal.org/en/article/29287

Edited by Scaredofradiation3
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  • 2 weeks later...

You must remember that correlation is not causation. Simply because those who more often use mobile devices also tend to have unhealthier spermatozoans, does not mean that mobile devices are changing one's DNA. Rather, it is likely that a factor correlated with one's increased usage of mobile devices is also responsible, either directly or indirectly, for the poor seminal health. 

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  • 1 month later...

I'm no biologist or even particularly knowledgeable about science in general, at least not at a scientist's level. But I would be sceptical about that sort of thing.

For years a lot of people have been making claims that things have huge health benefits or threats. But apparently there's reason to think it's been done to get attention, sell stuff or just bad science. 

In Britain there's a newspaper called The Daily Mail, here is a list of all the things they genuinely claimed cause cancer: 

Daily Mail, cancer

 

And make sure your pop-up blocker is on before you look at these...

Adam ruins nutrition

Adam ruins science

Which show how flawed studies can be and how easy it is to fake one.

I hope this helps. 

Edited by Omnifarious
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