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Feychting, Maria; Ahlbom, Anders; & Savitz, David A. (1998). Electromagnetic Fields and Childhood Leukemia. Epidemiology, 9(3), 225-226.


Magnetic field exposure is ubiquitous in modern society; there is no one who is unexposed. In this issue, Hatch et al have attempted to assess the risk of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) related to the use of electrical appliances. They have chosen to examine the risk associated with each individual appliance, rather than to combine exposures from several appliances into one exposure estimate. To construct a dose measure based on the combination of exposures from several sources is a challenge, considering the variation of the exposure pattern from different appliances and the absence of a known mechanism by which magnetic fields would affect cancer development. Combining distinct exposure sources into a single metric requires a biological rationale for choosing an appropriate metric that could be used to define a ggradient of exposure. If a proper dose measure could be found, however, it would enhance our understanding of the possible effects of magnetic field exposure, because that method would allow us to identify subjects with truly low exposures to be constrsted with those who are highly exposed.


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Feychting, Maria
Ahlbom, Anders
Savitz, David A.