Effect of Electromagnetic Radiation of Mobile Phones on Hearing Sensitivity

  • Porika Rajendra Kumar Audiologist and Speech Language Pathologist Ali Yavar Jung National Institute of Speech and Hearing Disabilities (Divyangjan), Secunderabad, India.
  • A. Navya Research Officer All India Institute of Speech and Hearing Mysuru, India
  • Bheemani Srinivasa Rao Lecturer (Speech & Hearing) Ali Yavar Jung National Institute of Speech and Hearing Disabilities (Divyangjan), Secunderabad, India. Mobile: +91 984191000
  • K.P. Priya Research Officer All India Institute of Speech and Hearing Mysuru, India
Keywords: mobile phone users, DPOAE, SRT, electromagnetic radiation, pure tone audiometry, speech recognition thresholds, otoacoustic emissions.

Abstract

Currently, mobile phone ownership and a number of users are very high in India and are increasing day by day. The prolonged exposure to electromagnetic radiations by using a mobile phone can have detrimental effects on the human body which also includes the auditory system. There is a dearth of research studies focusing on consequences of exposure to the electromagnetic radiation emitted by mobile phones on the hearing mechanism. Hence, the current study is aimed to investigate the influence of mobile phone usage on the auditory system through audiological evaluations such as pure tone audiometry, speech audiometry, and distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAE). The study included 105 individuals who are mobile users and 38 subjects who are non-mobile users. The SPSS software version 16 was used to perform normality tests and independent t-tests. The results indicated statistically significant differences in the scores across the groups. In pure tone audiometry (PTA) the auditory thresholds were significantly high especially at high frequencies, and in speech audiometry, the speech recognition threshold (SRT) was significantly high in mobile phone users than nonusers. In fact, the amplitude of DPOAEs was also significantly less in mobile phone users compared to nonusers. The test results also revealed that the hearing sensitivity in the dominant ear (preferred ear for mobile use) is relatively more affected than the nondominant ear. Therefore, the study concludes that the prolonged use of mobile phone can diminish the hearing sensitivity over a period of time.

References

Amos, N. E., & Humes, L. E. (2007). The contribution of high frequencies to speech recognition in quiet and noise in listeners with varying degrees of high-frequency sensorineural hearing loss. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 50(4), 819-834.
Arai, N., Enomoto, H., Okabe, S., Yuasa, K., Kamimura, Y., & Ugawa, Y. (2003). Thirty minutes mobile phone use has no short-term adverse effects on central auditory pathways. Clinical neurophysiology, 114(8), 1390-1394.
Bak, M., Sliwinska-Kowalska, M., Zmyslony, M., & Dudarewicz, A. (2003). No effects of acute exposure to the electromagnetic field emitted by mobile phones on brainstem auditory potentials in young volunteers. International journal of occupational medicine and environmental health, 16(3), 201-208.
Balikci, K., Ozcan, I. C., Turgut-Balik, D., & Balik, H. H. (2005). A survey study on some neurological symptoms and sensations experienced by long term users of mobile phones. Pathologie Biologie, 53(1), 30-34.
Davidson, H. C., & Lutman, M. E. (2007). Survey of mobile phone use and their chronic effects on the hearing of a student population: Encuesta sobre el uso de teléfonos celulares y sus efectos crónicos sobre la audición de una población estudiantil. International Journal of Audiology, 46(3), 113-118.
Frank, T. (2000). ANSI update: maximum permissible ambient noise levels for audiometric test rooms. American Journal of Audiology, 9(1), 3-8.
Gandhi, G., Gandhi, A., & Singh, P. (2005). Mobile phone users: another high health risk group. Journal of Human Ecology, 18(2), 85-92.
Hamblin, D. L., & Wood, A. W. (2002). Effects of mobile phone emissions on human brain activity and sleep variables. International journal of radiation biology, 78(8), 659-669.
Hughson, W., & Westlake, H. D. (1944). Manual for Program Outline for Rehabilitation of Aural Casualties Both Military and Civilian: Sponsored by the American Academy of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology: Douglas Print. Company.
Janssen, T., Boege, P., von Mikusch-Buchberg, J., & Raczek, J. (2005). Investigation of potential effects of cellular phones on human auditory function by means of distortion product otoacoustic emissions. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 117(3), 1241-1247.
Kacker, S. K., & Basavaraj, V. (1990). Indian Speech, Language and Hearing Tests - The ISHA battery -1990. Mysore: Indian Speech and Hearing Association
Kerekhanjanarong, V., Supiyaphun, P., Naratricoon, J., & Laungpitackchumpon, P. (2005). The effect of mobile phone to audiologic system. JOURNAL-MEDICAL ASSOCIATION OF THAILAND, 88, S231.
Lai, H., & Singh, N. P. (1997). Acute exposure to a 60 Hz magnetic field increases DNA strand breaks in rat brain cells. Bioelectromagnetics: Journal of the Bioelectromagnetics Society, The Society for Physical Regulation in Biology and Medicine, The European Bioelectromagnetics Association, 18(2), 156-165.
Mild, K. H., Oftedal, G., Sandström, M., Wilén, J., Tynes, T., Haugsdal, B., & Hauger, E. (1998). Comparison of Symptoms Experienced by Users of Analogue and Digital Mobile Phones: A Swedish-Norwegian Epidemological Study: Arbetslivsinstitutet.
Monnery, P., Srouji, E., & Bartlett, J. (2004). Is cochlear outer hair cell function affected by mobile telephone radiation? Clinical Otolaryngology & Allied Sciences, 29(6), 747-749.
Ozturan, O., Erdem, T., Miman, M. C., Kalcioglu, M. T., & Oncel, S. h. (2002). Effects of the electromagnetic field of mobile telephones on hearing. Acta oto-laryngologica, 122(3), 289-293.
Panda, N. K., Jain, R., Bakshi, J., & Munjal, S. (2010a). Audiologic disturbances in long-term mobile phone users. Journal of Otolaryngology--Head & Neck Surgery, 39(1).
Panda, N. K., Jain, R., Bakshi, J., & Munjal, S. (2010b). Audiological disturbances in long term mobile phone users. J Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg, 39(1), 5-11.
Shayani-Nasab, M., Naiianni, S. S., & Makaremi, M. F. A. A. (2006). Effects of mobile telephones on hearing. Acta Medica Iranica, 44(1), 46-48.
Uloziene, I., Uloza, V., Gradauskiene, E., & Saferis, V. (2005). Assessment of potential effects of the electromagnetic fields of mobile phones on hearing. BMC public health, 5(1), 39.
Velayutham, P., Govindasamy, G. K., Raman, R., Prepageran, N., & Ng, K. (2014). High-frequency hearing loss among mobile phone users. Indian Journal of Otolaryngology and Head & Neck Surgery, 66(1), 169-172.
Published
2018-10-27
Section
Articles