Non-specific physical symptoms in relation to actual and perceived proximity to mobile phone base stations and powerlines

Baliatsas, Christos; van Kamp, Irene; Kelfkens, Gert; Schipper, Maarten; Bolte, John; Yzermans, Joris; Lebret, Erik
January 2011
BMC Public Health;2011 Supplement 4, Vol. 11 Issue Suppl 4, p421
Academic Journal
Background: Evidence about a possible causal relationship between non-specific physical symptoms (NSPS) and exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) emitted by sources such as mobile phone base stations (BS) and powerlines is insufficient. So far little epidemiological research has been published on the contribution of psychological components to the occurrence of EMF-related NSPS. The prior objective of the current study is to explore the relative importance of actual and perceived proximity to base stations and psychological components as determinants of NSPS, adjusting for demographic, residency and area characteristics. Methods: Analysis was performed on data obtained in a cross-sectional study on environment and health in 2006 in the Netherlands. In the current study, 3611 adult respondents (response rate: 37%) in twenty-two Dutch residential areas completed a questionnaire. Self-reported instruments included a symptom checklist and assessment of environmental and psychological characteristics. The computation of the distance between household addresses and location of base stations and powerlines was based on geo-coding. Multilevel regression models were used to test the hypotheses regarding the determinants related to the occurrence of NSPS. Results: After adjustment for demographic and residential characteristics, analyses yielded a number of statistically significant associations: Increased report of NSPS was predominantly predicted by higher levels of self-reported environmental sensitivity; perceived proximity to base stations and powerlines, lower perceived control and increased avoidance (coping) behavior were also associated with NSPS. A trend towards a moderator effect of perceived environmental sensitivity on the relation between perceived proximity to BS and NSPS was verified (p = 0.055). There was no significant association between symptom occurrence and actual distance to BS or powerlines. Conclusions: Perceived proximity to BS, psychological components and socio-demographic characteristics are associated with the report of symptomatology. Actual distance to the EMF source did not show up as determinant of NSPS.


Related Articles

  • Consumers mixed up about wireless.  // RCR;08/25/97, Vol. 16 Issue 34, p23 

    Reports that consumers are confused about variety of choices and acronyms associated with wireless communications, according to a report commissioned by Ameritech Cellular Services. Percentage of respondents confused about the different types of wireless telephone options; Number of respondents...

  • Consumers want to control location information. Motsay, Emily // RCR Wireless News;8/20/2001, Vol. 20 Issue 34, p15 

    Presents the results of a study about the attitude of consumers toward location-based technology for wireless communication systems. Reference to a research by DriscollWolfe on wireless Internet location services in early 2001; Discussion on several consumer concerns; Attitude toward emergency...

  • Survey finds 50 percent of consumers favor driving and dialing legislation.  // RCR Wireless News;8/13/2001, Vol. 20 Issue 33, p10 

    Highlights the results of a survey conducted among consumers in the United States on issues concerning wireless communications. Percentage of wireless subscribes who uses their phones while driving; Views on laws requiring hands-free use of phones while driving; Opinion on the health risks posed...

  • Ameritech finds customers confused.  // Telecommunications - International Edition;Oct97, Vol. 31 Issue 10, p26 

    Cites the results of an Ameritech Corp. survey on American consumers' opinion of wireless telecommunications technology. Customer confusion about the different types of wireless telephone options available in the market; Customers' feelings of indifference about technology associated with wireless.

  • SOUTH AFRICA'S PRESS RESTRICTIONS: EFFECTS ON PRESS COVERAGE AND PUBLIC OPINION TOWARD SOUTH AFRICA. Singer, Eleanor; Ludwig, Jacob // Public Opinion Quarterly;Fall87, Vol. 51 Issue 3, p315 

    The 2 November 1985 ban on photographic and sound recordings by the South African government provided an opportunity to investigate hypotheses concerning the effect of the ban on U.S. media coverage of South Africa and on public opinion toward South Africa. We hypothesized that the ban would...

  • Roaming Charges Only The Howells Could Afford. Mickelson, Aleah // Wireless Week;05/29/2000, Vol. 6 Issue 22, p22 

    Deals with the result of surveys done about wireless phones in the United States. List of television or movie characters that benefited from having a wireless phone; Opinions of adults on the significance of wireless phones.

  • Survey wireless consumer attitudes.  // Communications News;Jun99, Vol. 36 Issue 6, p10 

    Offers information on a survey commissioned by the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association about the people's views on their wireless phones and service. Survey findings.

  • WHAT'S UP WITH WIRELESS? Treadwell, Terry // Credit Union Management;Apr2002, Vol. 25 Issue 4, p28 

    Reports that wireless transaction potential among credit unions is huge. Result of the survey of credit unions' use of wireless devices; Various reasons surveyed consumers in the U.S. gave for using wireless devices; Factor that might inhibit wireless devices' growth.

  • Wireless enhanced services: Time for a change.  // Telecommunications - Americas Edition;Nov99, Vol. 33 Issue 11, p16 

    Cites the results of Strategis Group survey which showed that several enhanced services are key to the future success of cellular and personal communication service carriers. Prepaid services; Calling party pays; Wireless electronic-mail and information services.


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics