Electro-hypersensitivity: the so-called allergy to modern life


When Stephenson’s Rocket was first trialled, there had to be large fences erected along the sides of the track to protect passers-by from the sight, due to the popular belief that if a man was to travel at the speed the train would achieve, he would instantly die a horrible horrible death.  I don’t know if this is true in the slightest, or simply one of those urban myths that gets passed-on after the fact, but it’s a quirky little tale that came back to me when I read this article yesterday.  No matter what technological breakthrough is made, there’s always some element of fear that it will cause us harm.  Sitting near the TV will make you go blind. Microwave ovens will give you radiation poisoning.  And now electro-hypersensitivity…

Former TV producer, Sarah Dacre, 53, had a successful career in London, but, in 1994, she suddenly began suffering from a pattern of mysterious symptoms.
When finally diagnosed with electro-hypersensitivity, her illness forced her to leave both her job and her home. Divorced, with a grown-up son at university, she now lives in Kent.

“Former TV producer, Sarah Dacre, 53, had a successful career in London, but, in 1994, she suddenly began suffering from a pattern of mysterious symptoms.

When finally diagnosed with electro-hypersensitivity, her illness forced her to leave both her job and her home. Divorced, with a grown-up son at university, she now lives in Kent” – Source: Mail Online, June 27, 2009

In the article, she explains how as her life became more packed with technology – phones, laptops, you name it – she became more and more ill.  And then someone told her that the phones, laptops and you-name-its were the cause of the illness.

What the article doesn’t mention is ANYTHING SCIENTIFIC AT ALL.  At all.  Have a good look, really, I tried, but all I could find were correlation/causation fallacies – ‘I had lots of electrical stuff and got ill, you do the maths’ essentially.

In fact much of the article isn’t worth commenting on – it’s little more than list of symptoms.  But there are some points worthy of note:

Over the next two years I visited a succession of doctors and alternative therapists, and I tried all sorts of cures, but found nothing that did me any good.

This gives the impression of the inadequacy of real medicine, to help the story sell as a real alternative therapy win.  It would be interesting to read which pseudomedical treatments she tried, and what they said she had – if real medicine ‘failed’ her then every one of those alt-med’s ‘failed’ her too.

As the symptoms grew worse, so new ones appeared. By 2003, I’d developed high blood pressure and started suffering from panic attacks and breathlessness.

Although I was naturally anxious about all of this, I knew that my problems were more than psychological, and that my condition was being made worse by worry rather than being the result of it.

I don’t think it’s unreasonable to believe that going through a phonebook of worthless woo-peddlers to find out what was ailing someone might make them stressed – causing panic and high blood pressure.

Desperate for help, my son and partner began searching the internet for a solution to my problem. They found websites that warned of the harmful effects of electromagnetic impulses on the human body, and the symptoms listed were all identical to mine – it is called electro-hypersensitivity, or EHS.

I’d love to see the scientific evidence shown on these websites that laptops and cordless phones cause brittle fingernails, as one of her symptoms was reported to be.  I did a Google search of her symptoms for myself, and nothing suggested for a second that ‘EHS’ was her illness. Or even that it’s an actual, proven-to-exist illness at all.

Now I knew what to do. I cleared my bedroom of the phone, TV, computer and electrical wires of any kind, and lined it with foil wallpaper.

I also screened the windows with silver radiation-proof fabric, and started wearing a head net to protect against mast emissions.

Why is it that the pseudosciences love tinfoil so much?  Maybe she was worried aliens were the cause of her EHS…

Finally, in 2006, I was diagnosed with EHS by a specialist I found on the internet.

A specialist on the internet.  Tin foil, and internet specialists.  I swear I’m not making this up.

At last I could prove I was not mad, but ill. But it still remained very hard for me to function in day-to-day life. I could not use, or even be near, mobile phones, microwave ovens, radios, WiFi-enabled computers, or be in public buildings such as airports, railway stations, museums or restaurants; travel on the Tube, or drive on a motorway without triggering symptoms of EHS. I couldn’t even visit friends.

Here’s the real downside and harm of this particular pseudomedicine – because of this bogus internet specialist plus Sarah’s desperate need to explain her symptoms away, she’s been convinced into a lifestyle that, frankly, sounds unbearably dull, isolated and radical.

Five months ago, I sold my house in London and moved to rural Kent. Within a month, my health improved dramatically.

I suppose this is because rural Kent hasn’t got electrical wires. Or mobile phone masts. Or microwaves, or railways, or public buildings, or restaurants, or radios.

Or, as seems far more likely, could it be that moving away from London, from a very stressful job, from the troubles of raising a child as a working mother in a metropolis, from the real stress of everyday life – could leaving all that behind have been the actual cure?  Spending your days growing vegetables in rural Kent is a far more relaxing life to lead than surviving the cut-throat TV industry in London, and the change of pace is a far more likely explanation for the miraculous cessation of her symptoms (all of which seem, to a lay person such as me, to be stress-related – although I stress I’m not a doctor.  And nor am I a specialist from the internet).  Microwaves, TVs and radios have been around a long time, yet there’s no evidence that electro-hypersensitivity is anything more than psychosomatic.

I don’t blame Sarah for her tale in the slightest – she felt increasingly ill, and increasingly desperate for an answer to her ill-health.  In the same situation, we could all be taken in by something ridiculous, I’m sure.  But for the Mail to print her story without comment or response from a health professional shows a shocking lack of integrity.  As Sarah says:

My mission in life has now become to prevent anyone from suffering the way I did. And with our world filled with more and more electronics, there are going to be a lot more people like me out there soon.

And with our world filled with more and more pseudoscience and less and less critical, scientifically-aware journalism, I dare say there will be a lot more people like Sarah out there soon too.

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  1. #1 by supermanc on July 1, 2009 - 23:29

    you obviously havent done any research at all into what EHS – otherwise you would know that in some countries it is a recognised illness.
    should research ever darken your horizon, instead of trying to make cheap, worn out jokes – you may want to take a look at the radiation emitted from mobile phones. you will find that the uk allows the use of phones that are banned across the world – even the usa.
    i suggest you familiarise yourself with SAR ratings – so that you can then offer the world something more meaningful than your scouse wit.

  2. #2 by Marsh on July 2, 2009 - 00:14

    Thanks for your feedback. A few comments:

    supermanc :

    you obviously havent done any research at all into what EHS – otherwise you would know that in some countries it is a recognised illness.

    You mean Sweden, right? The evidence there is highly suspicious. As for research, I’d refer you to:
    http://bit.ly/sSsdX
    http://bit.ly/GGS9v

    Sufferers of EHS have not been able to distinguish between real and sham magnetic fields, furthermore their symptoms are not present when they are in the presence of real fields unbeknownst to them.

    supermanc :

    you may want to take a look at the radiation emitted from mobile phones

    I have, you may also:
    http://bit.ly/10FKML
    http://bit.ly/EpAO5
    http://bit.ly/16KoJT
    For example. All showing no causal link, and no evidence to support the belief that mobile phone masts cause ill health.

    SAR ratings, I believe, show that effects of mobile phone radiation can cause surface heating which, although inconvenient, causes no lasting damage.

    “In the USA, the FCC has set a SAR limit of 1.6 W/kg, averaged over a volume of 1 gram of tissue, for the head. In Europe, the limit is 2 W/kg, averaged over a volume of 10 grams of tissue.” – Source: Wikipedia. I can find it elsewhere if you need.
    This leads to the discrepancy between the phones allowed in the US and in the UK – however there are no proven links between UK-standard phones and ill-health (happy to be proved wrong here, if you have the evidence to share).

    Furthermore, the article does not specifically cover simply mobile phone masts – but TVs, Microwaves (invented in 1940s, household items now for over 40 years – with no proven ill effects) and all manner of electrical items, including inner-wall electrical wiring.

    I’m happy to familiarise myself with any studies you might want to share that support your position.

    Finally, to deal with the ad hominum, my wit (however cheap and worn-out) is actually non-scouse, but that’s not something I expected you to be able to have evidence to make a clear judgement on. So we’ll stick to seeing any evidence you have for the harm of phone masts and other electrical equipment.

  3. #3 by Colonel Molerat on July 2, 2009 - 10:10

    @Supermanc
    Did you get your superpowers through the effects of EHS?
    Can you shoot electromagnetic impulses out of your fingertips, that cause high blood pressure, panic attacks and brittle fingernails?
    I can.

  4. #4 by supermanc on July 10, 2009 - 11:31

    in fact – ALL of Europe – is that enough for you?
    I mind which cell phone you buy because before too long it may be outlawed.
    an interesting FACT in the link below is the cluster of cancers that have occurred since the installation of cell phone masts. so it may not be just you that suffers.

    http://www.lizlynne.org.uk/news/001171/liz_lynne_calls_for_more_research_after_visiting_the_site_of_the_worst_electromagnetic_radiation_in_england.html

  5. #5 by Marsh on July 11, 2009 - 13:34

    @supermanc
    Quick response to your key points:
    1. At present, EHS is not an acceptable diagnosis anywhere outside of Sweden in Europe, and even that is disputed. This is the latest status as per my research via Pubmed, medical journals and the network of doctors I know. If you have data from a reputable, peer-reviewed and scientifically-sound source, by all means present it and I’ll review my conclusions.
    2. At present, the data regarding cancer clusters and cell-phone masts is far from conclusive.
    3. Electro-hypsersensitivity is NOT cancer. The two are in no way related. This is a response to a claim on the former, not the latter. Please don’t muddy the water with flimsy straw-man arguments – stick to the topic at hand. There will be other times for you to comment on cancer stories, I’m sure.
    4. The ‘sufferer’ in the EHS article does not restrict her symptoms to cell-phone use – how do you explain her assertion that radios, TVs and wires in her walls also caused her symptoms? How do you account for her use of tin-foil on walls and as a hat ‘reducing’ the symptoms she felt?
    5. The link you provided as proof is not from a medical source – Liz Lynne is an MEP, a politician, and previous to that she was an actress and speech coach. So not a doctor, researcher or science-involved. Please provide data from reputable, peer-reviewed and scientifically-sound sources.

  6. #7 by supermanc on July 13, 2009 - 13:28

    i’m afraid your wrong. i’m too busy to bother anymore.bye
    btw cancer mentioned all over the place in the article.
    good luck to us all

  7. #8 by Marsh on July 13, 2009 - 13:57

    @supermanc
    Just to be clear, the article I was talking about is the article I wrote about. I thought that might have been apparent, but I guess it needs clearing up because you’ve confused it with one that mentions cancer ‘all over the place’. Just to be clear, this cancer-free article is the one I was responding to:
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-1195551/It-happened–Im-allergic-modern-life.html

    Furthermore, the CV you linked to is hosted by and affiliated to the following website: http://www.radiationresearch.org/ which features as a main article: “…the world of electro-magnetic radiation that we experience in our daily lives. Learn the practical and preventative methods to protect you and your family from its harmful effects.”

    Again, I think you’ve misunderstood my request for data from reputable, peer-reviewed and scientifically-sound source.

    Still, fortunately you’ve decided the debate is closed with your declaration of my incorrectness, so I suppose there’s nothing more to be said on the subject…!

  8. #9 by Colonel Molerat on July 13, 2009 - 14:29

    http://www.skepdic.com/emf.html
    Thought the Sceptic’s Dictionary may help. It has a couple of dozen references and links. I thought it may balance out Supermanc’s three links.
    I wonder if Supermanc suffers from EHS. Is there any indiciation of stress or panic in their posts?… Maybe they left abruptly because their fingernails were getting too brittle to type…

  9. #10 by supermanc on July 16, 2009 - 20:26

    ….and israel
    http://www.haaretz.co.il/hasite/spages/1100555.html

    -hope your hebrew is up to scratch

  10. #11 by supermanc on July 16, 2009 - 20:29

    if not .. it concerns parotid gland cancer – something, i believe that even mole-rat’s suffer from – must be all that talking and sh1tt1ng through the same hole

  11. #12 by Marsh on July 22, 2009 - 21:12

    Hi again Supermanc! OK, we’re getting somewhere now. So ALL of Europe (as you expressed in #4) actually equates to Sweden and Israel. OK.

    And again, just to be clear, there is nothing in the article I commented on, nor in the comments I’ve made, that make any claims regarding cancer. Electro-hypersensitivity is not cancer. I really can’t stress that enough.

    Finally, an obscure Hebrew website isn’t really what can be considered data from a reputable, peer-reviewed and scientifically-sound source. Which is still all I’m asking for.

    So, please just to be clear, could you provide one reliable, doubly-blind study that shows any links at all between electro-magnetic frequencies (not even specifically mobile phone radiation, which we’ve dealt with already) and any of the symptoms expressed in the article (which are specifically not cancer).

    Merci!
    Marsh

  12. #13 by supermanc on July 23, 2009 - 23:06

    56 welsh people here;
    http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/health-news/tm_headline=is-modern-life-bad-for-our-health&method=full&objectid=19835825&siteid=50082-name_page.html
    are you saying you’re right and they are all wrong? – better be careful – this is the chosen holiday destination of scousers;)

  13. #14 by Marsh on July 24, 2009 - 00:00

    Hi Supermanc

    Sorry, maybe I wasn’t clear – could you provide one reliable, doubly-blind study that shows any links at all between electro-magnetic frequencies (not even specifically mobile phone radiation, which we’ve dealt with already) and any of the symptoms expressed in the article (which are specifically not cancer).

    – The plural of anecdote is not data – 56 peoples’ opinions do not constitute medical evidence. Just to be clear on this – this isn’t a clash between my opinion and the opinions of 56 Welsh people. This is about evidence and data, I’ve shown you plenty of proof and studies which support the medically-proven position that EHS is not real. You’ve linked me to an obscure Israeli website in Hebrew, and now a story from a local paper.
    – WalesOnline.co.uk is not a peer-reviewed scientific journal, the article is not a study, it’s a news report in a local newspaper.
    – The story itself even explains: “We do know there is a large [scientific] literature that shows if people believe something will do them harm or benefit them, this can cause real biological effects due to the placebo effect.”
    – The conclusion of the article is this: “Those in the EH group reported more symptoms and symptoms of greater severity regardless of whether the signal was on or off” So your proof actually supports my position – people suffer symptoms even when there is no electro-magnetic field in action on them. Therefore it’s placebo.
    – Again, the article: “This large and carefully designed study provides further evidence that signals from mobile phone masts do not produce harmful effects at least in the short term.”

    So, please just to be clear, could you provide one reliable, double-blind study that shows any links at all between electro-magnetic frequencies (not even specifically mobile phone radiation, which we’ve dealt with already) and any of the symptoms expressed in the article (which are specifically not cancer).

    The very-much non-scouse Marsh 😉

  14. #15 by supermanc on July 25, 2009 - 09:51

    here we go again;
    i know you scousers have an aversion to The Sun but here is yesterdays;
    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/features/2552553/Wi-fi-waves-make-top-DJ-Dave-Miller-sick.html
    for everyone else there is the telegraph;
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/5898353/The-man-who-is-allergic-to-Wi-Fi.html
    if only things were as simple as believing double blind tests – the problem is that they are unable to replicate real life situations.
    i’ve given you the phd – you give me one that is not sponsored by the cell phone industry.

  15. #16 by Mike on July 25, 2009 - 16:05

    @supermanc

    Sorry to cut in, but really… Marsh has asked you repeatedly to produce evidence; and you keep coming back with anecdotal newspaper reports.

    There is good reason why science does not consider anecdotes to be reliable. They have no controls. There are hundreds, thousands, of other things going on in these people’s lives which could account for their symptoms. The point of clinical trials is to remove all these other variables and see if there is still an effect.

    In the case of eletrohypersensitivity, when the controlled trials are done, the effect disappears. You’re right when you say that these trials don’t replicate real-life conditions; they’re not meant to. They’re designed to see if electromagnetic fields cause the described symptoms; and the test results say they do not. This means it is something else (who knows what, could be anything) causing these problems.

    We’re not in this as shills for cell phone companies – we have no corporate paymasters. We’re only interested in can be shown to be true and what can’t.

    The good news for you is, we won’t publish material we know to be inaccurate, so if you can produce some proper, blinded, peer-reviewed, clinical trials (PubMed or Google Scholar would be good places to start), with protocols of a higher standard than the data we have found, then we will be happy to publish a retraction. That’s how science works; that’s how scientific skepticism works; that’s how we work.

    We looked for the data. We didn’t find any. So until we see some, we’re calling this a myth.

  16. #17 by Marsh on July 27, 2009 - 10:34

    @supermanc
    Again, newspaper articles ARE NOT SCIENTIFIC DATA. But, just to play on the uneven field you seem happy to stagger around on, here’s the very same newspaper’s rebuttal, published THE VERY SAME DAY:
    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/technology/iandouglas/100002500/why-no-one-is-allergic-to-wifi/

    Also, you haven’t given us the phd. You’ve given us a DJ making unfounded health claims, which are instantly discredited by the newspaper who published them.

  17. #18 by supermanc on August 3, 2009 - 12:34

    All of us are electrosensitive to some degree, but some more so than others. This too seems to be due to membrane leakage. The precise effects depend on which cells leak and the source of the radiation.

    When the cells of the skin leak, it causes inflammation. When our sensory cells leak, it can make them send false signals to the brain, so we may get sensations of heat, burning, pins and needles, etc.

    If the cells of the inner ear leak, we can get false sensations of sound (tinnitus) or our sense of balance is affected so we feel dizzy and may get all the symptoms of motion sickness.
    When neurons in the brain leak, they become more inclined to transmit nerve impulses. This makes the brain hyperactive so that it is more difficult to get to sleep and we may get stress headaches.

    Another effect of brain hyperactivity is to speed our reaction times to outside stimulation. However, because some of the nerve impulses are false, it tends also to cloud our thinking; we lose concentration and become more easily distracted.

    This may cause attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children. In adults, it may be partly responsible for the increased accident rate when people use cell phones while driving. You are four times more likely to have an accident, even with hands-free types.

    On the whole, the body sees these effects as harmful and does what it can to minimise them, but the best solution is to avoid the radiation.

    Some of the symptoms may be the body’s way of telling us to do just that. We become sensitised to the radiation, just as a wound remains tender (i.e. more sensitive to pain) for some time after an injury. This forces us to protect it from further damage while it is healing. In the case of EHS, it may not be easy to escape the radiation and the symptoms continue. The consolation is that these symptoms are not life-threatening; they do go away when you remove the source of radiation and, if there is no further exposure, you may gradually become desensitised.

  18. #19 by Marsh on August 3, 2009 - 14:52

    @supermanc

    OK, so we’ve abandoned the whole earlier part of the debate, and we’re starting again from a different track? Sure. Just for clarity, you’ve copied and pasted from this site:
    http://www.mastsanity.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=262&Itemid=136

    Which is, as it states, is:

    “…the primary national organisation opposing the insensitive siting of mobile phone and Tetra masts in the UK”

    Which is a) not an independant source, and b) not a peer-reviewed, scientifically-sound journal.

    Even looking at the quote you’ve hastily inserted, there’s a really clear leap of faith going on:

    “All of us are electrosensitive to some degree, but some more so than others. This too seems to be due to membrane leakage”

    Where’s the evidence for that? That’s the only sentence in the entire paragraph you’ve pasted in that has any real importance, and it’s woefully lacking in any kind of back-up. It ‘seems’ to be due to membrane leakage? That’s shockingly vague and intellectually dishonest. We’re all electrosensitive? Define electrosensitive, and to what degree. If you mean able to sense electricity or electro-magnetic frequencies, then yes, we are – light is an electro-magnetic frequency. Heat too. I can sense those. That’s wildly different from feeling ill around radios and TVs and inner-wall electrical wires; it’s in fact no way comparable. To say ‘to some degree’ is to weasel-word the claim to make it sound in some way like it’s say something – and it very clearly isn’t. A scientific journal would never get away with vague wording like that – which is why scientific standards exist.

    So, please just to be clear, could you provide one reliable, double-blind study that shows any links at all between electro-magnetic frequencies and any of the symptoms expressed in the article .

  19. #21 by supermanc on August 6, 2009 - 12:09

    i expected that no-one would respond to the above. basically i dont give a sh1t about double blind tests – they dont amount to a hill of beans.
    what you are proporting is that we trust those who have an official interest in the mobile phone industry/govt to come up with answers to the problems that have arisen in the past ten years.
    Call me a cynic – not a sheep, but where influence from industry/govt can be exerted you should be very wary of the outcomes.

    if you guys had your way we would be smoking/ using asbestos and viewing nuclear fall out.

    with your one track goal for double blind tests, you miss the point. that is that there is a marked increase of people suffering with a wide range of disorders.

    maybe you should be focussing on those doctors who have signed the freiburg appeal. they claim we are witnessing an increase in brain tumors, leukaemia ,alzheimers.

    Some illnesses chronic headaches/tinnitus/exhaustion – hypersensitivity disapear following the reduction/elimination in radiation.

    over to you

  20. #22 by Mike on August 6, 2009 - 12:44

    @supermanc

    No-one responded to your last comment because you still haven’t responded to any of the points Marsh has made. You ignore our rebuttals of your “data” and post more links to newspapers.

    It’s a very simple question, why won’t you answer it: WHERE IS THE EVIDENCE?

    Newspaper reports and links to articles about cancer clusters are NOT evidence supporting the existence of electrohypersensitivity. Show me something published, by a real scientist, in a real scientific journal – not material in activist pamphlets or by credulous newspaper reporters.

    The reason we insist on blinded tests is because they are the most reliable way of finding out if an effect is real or not. Maybe there is, as you put it, a “marked increase in people suffering a with wide range of disorders”. We need to find out why those people are getting sick. How best to do that? With a blinded test. And when we do the blinded tests, alledged electrohypersensitivity sufferers can’t tell the difference between field generator which is turned on and one that isn’t. Ergo, cannot be the field causing their symptoms. Ergo, electrohypersensitivity is not their problem.

    Maybe these people are genuinely ill… but the test results say that it is not eletromagnetic fields causing it. Unless you can come up with the results of a better test, with the opposite result, then I’m going to side with the experts on this one. There is no such things as electrohypersensitivity.

  21. #23 by Marsh on August 6, 2009 - 12:47

    OK, let me get this straight – following scientifically-sound, double-blind tests is the mark of a sheep. Believing news articles in The Sun, a Welsh local paper (which, as I pointed out, specifically showed that there was NO effect – that was your own evidence) and some Israeli website – believing those sources is OK? Even with the inherent publication bias and intent to sell rather than to explore for truth?

    Now, just to be clear – why do you assume the articles I quoted as proof were funded by a ‘let’s kill people with electricity’ group? And is the bias not equally present in your own source of proof? So, the question is how do we determine which has and which hasn’t got bias? We take the bias of the investigators as much out of the equation as possible: we don’t let the scientists know which is the effect and which is the placebo until the results are in, and we let other scientists scrutinize the results for even the smallest inadequacy or inconsistency.

    Now you don’t care about double-blind tests, this much is clear. What, may I ask, is your issue with them? For example, your own ‘proof’ article in the Welsh newspaper showed that when people were not aware that the source of the EMF was switched off, they STILL felt their symptoms – showing it was psychosomatic. This is the benefit of double-blind tests.

    Personally, if you’d like to smoke I don’t mind – we know the risks of that, we’ve got the evidence in, and it clearly does kill. If people, armed with that knowledge, still want to smoke, well that’s what personal freedom is for.

    Scientists are asking questions about Electro-Hypersensitivity, but those questions are at the initial level of determining an effect, rather than assuming an effect and shutting down the 21st Century. Those questions have not had an answer that supports EHS, for example:
    – What is the purported mechanism for EHS?
    – Are people allergic to all forms of EMF, or just to the higher wavelengths?
    – In what way does it interact with the body at a physiological level?
    – Where is the biological plausibility?
    – Why would we only now (the last 10 years, you say) be seeing claims of electro-hypersensitivity, when we’ve been operating widespread TV for over 50 years and Radio for far longer?

  22. #24 by Trystan on August 6, 2009 - 19:35

    I imagine his issue with double blind studies is the same as that with other true believers … they tend to shatter delusions. Why have objective results when a cartload of pseudoscience, testimonials and confirmation bias is far better to keep circular reasoning alive and well.

  23. #25 by supermanc on August 7, 2009 - 12:57

    I like many others consented to being tested for Electro hypersensitivity
    at Essex University. I am sure that many of you thought it would prove
    once and for all that our symptoms are real. Instead many of the
    participants were quite shocked when they announced the results of the
    study, stating that only one person got all six tests correct, I know I
    was, in fact I did not believe them.
    The tests were arranged over three weeks consisting of exposure to
    UMTS (3G), Sham and GSM, so each of the participants would be
    exposed to one condition per week. The order of exposure was done
    under double-blind conditions, except for week one, where everyone was
    exposed to a quick five minute exposure to all conditions, total fifteen
    minutes, before the twenty minute exposure to one of the conditions.
    I personally got all the twenty minute tests correct, including the correct
    identification of signal type. However I got one of the five minute tests
    wrong, therefore five out of six correct.
    After some thought I contacted Elaine Fox by e-mail to find out how
    many had actually got five out of six correct. Her reply contained the
    following unpublished data set out below. I realised immediately that
    there were major errors in the mathematical analysis. Let me explain: first
    of all they bundled the 3G and GSM results together. This was incorrect
    because it does not prove if one type of signal has more of an effect than
    the other. Secondly they said that because there were three tests, chance
    would be 33% for the sham results and 66% for the bundled 3G & GSM.
    This is also incorrect. These tests were carried out over three weeks,
    therefore chance is 50% regardless of the bundled data.
    I asked them to unbundle the 3G and GSM results because I was sure that
    the 3G would prove to be the most detrimental to the participants. They
    claimed they could not do that, but given all this data is on a computer
    spreadsheet it would have been easy to do.
    I have reservations about being involved in any future subjective testing,
    and would not recommend anyone taking part. Unless, it was done by a
    trusted independent Physicist who understands Electro Hypersensitivity.
    The Essex team in my opinion did not provide Duty Of Care towards
    vulnerable people who are already suffering. All participants should have
    been given time in a shielded room for a least one hour before testing
    Page 1 of 5
    began so that their nervous systems had time to recover, this would have
    improved the Sham results.
    Clearly the results have been influenced, possibly externally, possibly to
    obtain further funding for the TETRA tests, I know that they are
    advertising for Electro Sensitive people to come forward for this.
    I will leave you to your own conclusions.
    Following document (in black) originated from Elaine Fox on 23rd or
    24th August 2007. It was send by email to Phillip Watts:
    ON/OFF JUDGEMENTS
    SENSITIVE GROUP (EHS) COMPARED TO NON-SENSITIVE GROUP
    (CONTROLS)
    RAW SCORES
    EHS
    a (true
    pos)
    c (false
    pos)
    b (false
    neg)
    d (true
    neg)
    SUBJ
    TOT
    T1 21 13 6 4 44
    T2 16 7 13 8 44
    T3 21 8 11 4 44
    T4 22 5 11 6 44
    T5 18 9 10 7 44
    T6 22 11 6 5 44
    CONTROL
    a c b d
    SUBJ
    TOT
    T1 50 20 30 14 114
    T2 31 14 44 25 114
    T3 38 20 36 20 114
    T4 29 14 45 26 114
    T5 32 22 42 18 114
    T6 47 18 32 17 114
    Page 2 of 5
    a = guessed ‘on’ when it was ‘on’
    b = guessed ‘off’ when it was ‘on’
    c = guessed ‘on’ when it was ‘off’
    d = guessed ‘off’ when it was ‘off’
    T1 = Test1 (open prov)
    T2 = Test2 (open prov)
    T3 = Test3 (open prov)
    T4 = first of double-blind (S2)
    T5 = second double-blind (S3)
    T6 = third double-blind (S4)
    CALCULATED PERCENTAGES OF INDIVIDUALS WHO GUESSED CORRECTLY
    WHEN THE MAST WAS ON AND WHEN THE MAST WAS OFF
    s1 s2-4
    EHS
    OPEN PROVOCATION
    TESTS DOUBLE-BLIND TESTS
    guessed on when on guessed on when on
    58 62
    guessed off when off guessed off when off
    16 18
    Each person had 3 tests Each person had 3 tests
    132 132 both
    Therefore percent correct Therefore percent correct
    ON 43.939% chance 66.7% 46.970% chance 66.7%
    OFF 12.121% 33.3% 13.636% 33.3%
    CONTROLS
    guessed on when on guessed on when on
    119 108
    guessed off when off guessed off when off
    59 61
    Each person had 3 tests Each person had 3 tests
    342 342
    Therefore percent correct Therefore percent correct
    ON 34.795% chance 66.7% 31.579% chance 66.7%
    OFF 17.251% 33.3% 17.836% 33.3%
    Page 3 of 5
    The table below (in black) was as supplied by Elaine Fox in this document.
    Table with the maths corrected:
    s1 s2-4
    EHS
    OPEN PROVOCATION
    TESTS DOUBLE-BLIND TESTS
    guessed on when on guessed on when on
    58 65.9% 62 70.45%
    guessed off when off guessed off when off
    16 36.36% 18 40.90%
    Each person had 3 tests Each person had 3 tests
    132 132 both 55.3% 60.6%
    Therefore percent correct Therefore percent correct
    ON 65.9% chance equals 50% 70.45% chance equals 50%
    OFF 36.36% 50% 13.636% 50%
    CONTROLS
    guessed on when on guessed on when on
    119 52.19% 108 47.36%
    guessed off when off guessed off when off
    59 51.75% 61 53.51%
    Each person had 3 tests Each person had 3 tests
    342 342
    Therefore percent correct Therefore percent correct
    ON 52.19% chance equals 50% 47.36% chance equals 50%
    OFF 51.75% 50% 53.51% 50%
    (see explanation, next page)
    Page 4 of 5
    Explanation of the tabled results, for the sensitive group only, however the same
    mathematical analysis apply to the non sensitive group.
    The double blind tests were done in sessions two three and four, each test was one
    week apart, and only 44 participants completed all three tests, so in all there were 132
    tests over three weeks, 44*3=132.
    To confuse things Essex added the GSM and 3G ON scores together, and the OFF
    score separately,
    So 44*2=88 tests for the ON score and 44 for the OFF score, then they said because
    the scores were two thirds ON and one third OFF, then CHANCE is 66% for ON and
    33% for OFF
    Now if I take Essex maths for the On scores, they worked it out as follows, note they
    used the total figure of 132 tests when working out the percentages. Not 88 and 44 as
    they should have done.
    So, 62 divide by 132 = 46.97 % which is less than chance at 66%
    For The Off they said, 18 divide by 132 = 13.63% which is less than chance at 33%
    Now if we do the maths correctly using Chance as 50% and the correct figures of 88
    and 44 for the division.
    ON scores , 62 divide by 88= 70.45% which is better than chance at 50%
    OFF scores 18 divide by 44= 40.90% which is less than chance at 50%.
    The reason the OFF scores are less than chance, is because people who are sensitive
    should have been allowed some time in a shielded washout area, this would have
    allowed their nervous system to recover from the journey to the laboratory, before
    testing began.

  24. #26 by supermanc on August 7, 2009 - 13:02

    Unpublished data sent from one of the lead researchers to a study participant reveals how dubious math skewed the results.

    The data shows how 70% of EHS participants actually got the “ON” signals correct and how Essex researchers redefined the concept of “chance”.

    For some reason, Essex researchers assumed that electrohypersensitivity symptoms act like a perfect on/off switch so that symptoms would onset and disappear at exactly the same time as the signal.
    So, the Essex researchers assumed that EHS had to detect both “ON” (signal) and “OFF” (no signal) equally well in order for the results to count. Problem with that was that insufficient “washout” time was allowed in a shielded area for EHS participants to normalize after the journey to the study facilities.

  25. #27 by supermanc on August 7, 2009 - 13:04

    is 70% good enough for you guys

  26. #28 by Marsh on August 7, 2009 - 13:06

    Special pleading.

    Now, please answer any one of the questions I have asked you at any point in this whole conversation, even just one would be a nice start.

  27. #29 by supermanc on August 8, 2009 - 10:44

    i’m sorry, who uses phrases like ‘special pleading’ just read the above.

  28. #30 by Mike on August 9, 2009 - 09:58

    Marsh is right, it is special pleading. If you aren’t familiar with the term, look it up. The study shows no effect, so reasons are invented off the cuff to explain why it doesn’t count.

  29. #31 by supermanc on August 23, 2009 - 15:00

    moving on
    i find you double blind study info
    i indicate to you that the industry results vary drastically from non- industry
    i present to you accredited people who have studied the problems associated with hypersensitivity.
    i present to you some govts that are actually moving towards legislation on the basis that people are becoming victims of technology.
    i present to you – from a wide range of news reports – sufferers-both men and women young and old.

    now i ask you-
    would you move into a house which had a mobile phone mast outside on the street.
    when you go to bed do you switch off your wifi.
    when you go to bed do you have your phone switched on and by your head.
    do you also have a dect phone nearby
    when you microwave food – would you place your head next to the door to see if you can sense anything.

  30. #32 by supermanc on August 23, 2009 - 15:10

    oh i just came across a book for you guys – the description is similar to the way you have been hoodwinked by Thatchers lot.

    Doubt is Their Product: How industry’s assault on science threatens your health; by David Michaels ;

    buy it here;
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Doubt-Their-Product-industrys-threatens/dp/019530067X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1251036256&sr=8-1

    The Orwellian strategy of dismissing research conducted by the scientific community as “junk science” and elevating science conducted by product defense specialists to “sound science” status also creates confusion about the very nature of scientific inquiry and undermines the public’s confidence in science’s ability to address public health and environmental concerns. Such reckless practices have long existed, but Michaels argues that the Bush administration deepened the dysfunction by virtually handing over regulatory agencies to the very corporate powers whose products and behaviour they are charged with overseeing. In Doubt Is Their Product Michaels proves, beyond a doubt, that our regulatory system has been broken. He offers concrete, workable suggestions for how it can be restored by taking the politics out of science and ensuring that concern for public safety, rather than private profits, guides our regulatory policy.

  31. #33 by Mike on August 23, 2009 - 15:24

    Fascinating book and not remotely relevant to the conversation. When are you going to start showing us some evidence?

    Answers to your bizarre questions (in order): Yes, no, yes, no, yes.

  32. #34 by supermanc on August 25, 2009 - 23:59

    i thought so – you dont look the picture of health. i didnt ask if you put your head into the microwave

  33. #35 by Marsh on August 26, 2009 - 00:20

    Just to come back to earlier points:
    – you haven’t, at any point, provided any double blinded study info
    – your assertions on industry bias are unproven and completely irrelevant
    – the accredited people you have presented to us are lone, crackpot voices against the sea of verifiable scientific evidence
    – the governments you presented that are moving towards legislation amounted to Sweden, which is doing so in the face of great criticism and controversy, and even there EHS is not a legal diagnosis
    – the ‘wide range of reports’ you cited amounted to a local paper from Wales which actually stated EHS is psychosomatic, and a report from the Sun that was instantly discredited by the rest of the newspaper world.

    Further, all you are really offering is paranoia, personal attacks (‘you don’t look the picture of health’), loopy questions and bizarre grammar, and bizarre links and copy/pasted text from websites that are unrelated and nonsensical.

    As for your questions:
    – would you move into a house which had a mobile phone mast outside on the street > Yes, I would
    – when you go to bed do you switch off your wifi > Nope, and I suffer no ill consequence because of it, the same as everyone else
    – when you go to bed do you have your phone switched on and by your head > I switch it off to save battery, unless I need a special alarm, in which case I leave it on, because it is not harmful to do so
    – do you also have a dect phone nearby > a dect phone? what the hell is a dect phone?
    – when you microwave food – would you place your head next to the door to see if you can sense anything. > I wouldn’t, because I know there’s no point in it, but not for any reason of fear of consequence. There are many things I don’t do, even though I know they’re not harmful.

    Thanks for your continued interest though, we always enjoy hearing from our readers.

  34. #36 by Francis Robertson on October 25, 2010 - 18:47

    You may also want to try oral chelation therapy.(that use of one chelator (as EDTA) to bind with one metal (as lead or cadmium, arsenic) in that body to form one chelate so that that metal loses its toxic effect or physiological activity)this also works very well on eliminating metals.

    So if you have high blood pressure and gum and teeth issue,like sensitive teeth,bleeding gums you may want to take one metals test to see where you are. Also I had gum issues that went away with that elimination of metals. For me that teeth, gums and High blood pressure all came as one result of Heavy metal poisoning. Until I started consuming bentonite clay I was unable to bring it down. My typical readings would average 175 over 150.

    Once I began that clay baths and consuming clay orally my blood pressure began to come down. I tested for heavy metals and found that I was extremely high in one lot of metals. I be leave that metals are that root cause of High blood pressure. I had high blood pressure for 33 years.

    – Francis Robertson

(will not be published)