Can Cell Phone Use Cause Thyroid Cancer?

A recent study from the Yale School of Public Health found that radiation from mobile phones may be related to a higher risk of thyroid malignancy among individuals with specific gene varieties.

The specialists analyzed more than 900 individuals and found that those with certain gene varieties were at higher risk for malignancy in their thyroid gland.

Analysis of more than 170 genes revealed several gene varieties that make people more prone to thyroid cancer if they used cell phones.

According to Yawei Zhang, M.D., Ph.D., a professor in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the Yale School of Public Health, this study provides evidence that genetic susceptibility influences the relationship between cell phone use and thyroid cancer.

The study revealed that genetic variations may increase the risk of thyroid cancer in cell phone users. However, more research is needed to confirm the findings and to help identify people with the increased risk.

What makes the interpretation of the findings even more challenging is the fact that the study examined the cell phone users in 2010 – 2011, when the technology behind the cell phone signal transmission may have been different from what it is today.

According to American Cancer Society’s most recent estimates for thyroid cancer in the United States for 2020, there are 52,890 new cases of thyroid cancer (12,720 in men and 40,170 in women). Thyroid cancer is commonly diagnosed at a younger age than most other adult cancers.  Women are 3 times more likely to develop thyroid cancer than men.

TVC clinicians can help to diagnose thyroid cancer by ordering a thyroid ultrasound on patients who have symptoms suggestive of thyroid nodules, or those who have risk factors for thyroid cancer.