21/09/2007

Cell Phone Use May Cause Inner Ear Damage

Long-term use of a cell phone may cause inner ear damage and can lead to high frequency hearing loss, researchers found.

The study, Audiological Disturbances in Long-Term Mobile Phone Users, presented at the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundation’s Annual Meeting & OTO EXPO in Washington, D.C by Dr. Naresh Panda, head of India's ENT department, found that those who used their phone for more than an hour each day, for more than four years, had noticeable losses in high frequency hearing.


High frequency hearing loss is characterized by the loss of ability to hear consonants such as s, f, t, and z, even though vowels can be heard normally. Consequently, people hear sounds but cannot make out what is being said, according to the researchers.

Panda also suggested the use of earphones, which were found to be safer than holding a mobile phone up to the ears.

Study Links Cell Phone Use to Hearing Loss, Inner Ear Damage