Do signals of a hand-held TETRA transmitter affect cognitive performance, well-being, mood or somatic complaints in healthy young men? Results of a randomized double-blind cross-over provocation study.
Environ Res. 2015 Jul ;140:85-94. Epub 2015 Mar 31. PMID: 25839715
BACKGROUND: TETRA (terrestrial trunked radio) is a digital radio communication standard, which has been implemented in several European countries and is used by public executives, transportation services, and by private companies. Studies on possible impacts on the users' health considering different exposure conditions are missing.
OBJECTIVES: To investigate possible acute effects of electromagnetic fields (EMF) of two different levels of TETRA hand-held transmitter signals on cognitive function and well-being in healthy young males.
METHODS: In the present double-blind cross-over study possible effects of short-term (2.5h) EMF exposure of handset-like signals of TETRA (385 MHz) were studied in 30 healthy male participants (mean±SD: 25.4±2.6 years). Individuals were tested on nine study days, on which they were exposed to three different exposure conditions (Sham, TETRA 1.5 W/kg and TETRA 6.0 W/kg) in a randomly assigned and balanced order. Participants were tested in the afternoon at a fixed timeframe.
RESULTS: Attention remained unchanged in two out of three tasks. In the working memory significant changes were observed in two out of four subtasks. Significant results were found in 5 out of 35 tested parameters, four of them led to an improvement in performance. Mood, well-being and subjective somatic complaints were not affected by TETRA exposure.
CONCLUSIONS: The results of the present study do not indicate a negative impact of a short-term EMF-effect of TETRA on cognitive function and well-being in healthy young men.