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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2015  |  Volume : 27  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 178-182

Are we telephoning ourselves to an upcoming danger?


1 Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, St. Joseph Dental College and Hospital, Eluru, Andhra Pradesh, India
2 Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, G Pullareddy Dental College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India
3 Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, Haldia Institute of Dental Sciences and Research, Haldia, West Bengal, India
4 Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, Kamineni Institute of Dental Sciences, Narketpally, Telangana, India

Date of Submission13-Jan-2015
Date of Acceptance19-Oct-2015
Date of Web Publication21-Nov-2015

Correspondence Address:
Sreenivasulu Pattipati
Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, St. Joseph Dental College and Hospital, Duggirala, Eluru - 534 003, Andhra Pradesh
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0972-1363.170133

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   Abstract 

Aims and Objectives: To evaluate the effect of mobile phones on salivary flow rate and protein concentration in parotid saliva by comparing the dominant and non-dominant sides of prolonged mobile phone users. Materials and Methods: Parotid saliva was collected simultaneously from both the glands in 50 healthy volunteers by using sialographic cannula. The obtained results were statistically analyzed using paired t-test. Results: Salivary secretion rate was significantly less on the dominant side of mobile phone usage. There was no such significance in protein concentration on comparing the dominant side with the non-dominant side. Conclusion: It was concluded that there was a change in the functional activities of the parotid gland in prolonged mobile phone users.

Keywords: Mobile phones, parotid gland, radiation, saliva


How to cite this article:
Pattipati S, Velugubantla RG, Balmuri PK, Pachigolla R, Khaitan T, Ginjupally U. Are we telephoning ourselves to an upcoming danger?. J Indian Acad Oral Med Radiol 2015;27:178-82

How to cite this URL:
Pattipati S, Velugubantla RG, Balmuri PK, Pachigolla R, Khaitan T, Ginjupally U. Are we telephoning ourselves to an upcoming danger?. J Indian Acad Oral Med Radiol [serial online] 2015 [cited 2019 Aug 23];27:178-82. Available from: http://www.jiaomr.in/text.asp?2015/27/2/178/170133


   Introduction Top


In our day-to-day life, we live in an environment of electromagnetic radiation (EMR) produced by electrical appliances, power lines, wiring in buildings, and a swing of other technologies. Mobile phone is one among the new additions to this group of gadgets which produce EMR. In today's era, with the popularity of mobile phones, its radiation exposure [radiofrequency electromagnetic waves (RF-EMW)] has also increased causing hazardous effects. [1] Mobile phones play a dual role as a transmitter and receiver. The radiofrequency (RF) signals range between 800 and 2200 MHz, which are a part of the radio waves and microwaves of the electromagnetic spectrum. [2] It functions at a power output of 0.25 W, resulting in a specific energy absorption rate of about 1.5 W/kg. This energy causes a very minimal increase in brain temperature (maximum 0.1°C). [3],[4]

Previous studies have shown a direct correlation between mobile phone usage and the risk of brain tumors. The reason for this is increased exposure to electromagnetic fields near the temporal region which is in close proximity to the phone receiver. [5] Another area of interest is the parotid gland located in the preauricular region which is likely to be affected by the same radiation exposure. However, our understanding about the effects of mobile phone radiation on human body and parotid gland remains unclear. Literature reveals that the effects may be physiologic, structural, functional, or even carcinogenic. [6] In view of the above factors, this study was undertaken to evaluate the effect of mobile phones on salivary flow rate and protein concentration in parotid saliva by comparing the dominant and non-dominant sides of frequent mobile phone users.


   Materials and Methods Top


The study was conducted with 50 healthy students (25 males, 25 females) who were voluntarily willing to participate. The inclusion criterion was having the practice of mobile phone usage for at least 2 h/day (GSM mobile phones). The study was approved by the Institutional Research Ethical Committee and written informed consent was obtained from all participants.

Exclusion criteria were: Those volunteers using any mobile accessories like bluetooth devices or headset, chronic alcoholics, smokers, those with any systemic chronic diseases, those with previous trauma to orofacial structures, subjects having history of salivary gland disorders or using any medication causing xerostomia, pregnant women, and participants not sure about the side on which they use the mobile phone.

The armamentarium used for the study included sialographic cannula, lacrimal probe, surgical gloves, calibrated tubes, lemon juice, stopwatch, and syringe [Figure 1]. A questionnaire regarding the usage of mobile phones was filled in, following which saliva was collected from all subjects. Volunteers were instructed not to eat or drink half an hour before the collection of saliva. The saliva secretion rate of both parotid glands was measured. The salivary sample collection was done between 2 pm and 4 pm Indian Standard Time (IST). Sialographic cannula was inserted passively into the Stenson's duct and salivary flow stimulated with application of two drops of lemon juice over the tip of the tongue. Stimulated saliva was then collected for a period of 5 min in a calibrated tube [Figure 2] and [Figure 3]. Thereafter, the samples were measured and subjected to protein evaluation using end point method of protein estimation. The readings were recorded accordingly and subjected to statistical analysis.
Figure 1: Armamentarium

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Figure 2: Sialographic cannula inserted into Stenson's duct

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Figure 3: Simultaneous collection of saliva

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   Results Top


A total of 50 healthy students comprising 25 males and 25 females with a mean age 22.77 years participated in the present study. The mean time of mobile phone usage in a day was 3.29 h. A total of 28 participants (56%) used the right ear more frequently, which was their dominant side, and the remaining (44%) used left ear as their dominant side. Mean values and mean differences were calculated. Comparison of mean values of dominant and non-dominant sides was done by using paired t-tests. All statistical tests were analyzed to a significance level of 0.05 (probability value less than 0.05 was considered as statistically significant, i.e., P < 0.05).

Saliva secretion rate

The mean value on the dominant side was 0.56 ± 0.55 and on the non-dominant side was 0.72 ± 0.66. The mean difference was 0.16 ± 0.11 and the P-value was found to be 0.021, which was statistically significant [Graph 1], [Table 1]. In males, the mean salivary flow rate on the dominant side was 0.61 ± 0.60 and on the non-dominant side was 0.80 ± 0.75. The mean difference was 0.19 ± 0.15 and the P value was found to be 0.086, which was statistically not significant [Table 2]. In females, the mean salivary flow rate on the dominant side was 0.50 ± 0.50 and on the non-dominant side was 0.64 ± 0.56. The mean difference was 0.14 ± 0.06 and the P value was found to be 0.136, which was statistically not significant [Table 3]. On comparing males and females, the salivary flow rate was more in males, with a mean of 1.38 in males and 1.14 in females and a P value of 0.00027, which was statistically significant [Graph 2].
Table 1: Comparison of salivary flow rate between dominant and non-dominant sides in 50 volunteers

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Table 2: Comparison of salivary fl ow rate between dominant and non-dominant sides in male individuals

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Table 3: Comparison of salivary fl ow rate between dominant and non-dominant sides in female individuals

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Protein concentration

The mean value on the dominant side was 1.74 ± 0.43 and on the non-dominant side was 1.78 ± 0.42. The mean difference was 0.04 ± 0.01 and the P value was found to be 0.453, which was statistically not significant [Graph 3], [Table 4]. In males, the mean of protein concentration on the dominant side was 1.82 ± 0.44 and on the non-dominant side was 1.79 ± 0.38. The mean difference was 0.03 ± 0.06 and the P value was found to be 0.76, which was statistically not significant [Table 5]. In females, the mean of protein concentration on the dominant side was 1.66 ± 0.41 and on the non-dominant side was 1.77 ± 0.47. The mean difference was 0.11 ± 0.06 and the P value was found to be 0.132, which was statistically not significant [Table 6]. On comparing males and females, the protein concentration was more in males, with a mean of 3.6 in males and 3.4 in females; the P value was 0.00024, which was statistically significant [Graph 4].
Table 4: Comparison of protein content between dominant and non-dominant sides in 50 volunteers

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Table 5: Comparison of protein content between dominant and non-dominant sides in male individuals

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Table 6: Comparison of protein content between dominant and non-dominant sides in female individuals

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   Discussion Top


Salivary secretion is regulated by the autonomic parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems. Parasympathetic stimulation results in increased watery (less viscous) saliva, whereas sympathetic stimulation results in mucoid (more viscous) saliva that is rich in protein component. In the present study, lower salivary secretions and less protein concentrations were observed on the dominant side of mobile usage when compared to the non-dominant side. This was in accordance with the results of the studies conducted by Andrzejak et al. [7] and Al-hazimi. [8] They proved that the parasympathetic system tone was increased and the sympathetic tone was lowered with mobile phone usage, resulting in alteration of the autonomic nervous system in healthy subjects.

Mobile phones emit RF waves and generate heat, leading to changes in the bodily functions. [2],[6] Horowitz and Soskolne [9] stated that heat application in rats altered the weight and size of the salivary glands, indicating that structural changes occur in salivary glands due to heat production. We assume that thermal effects of mobile phones are the principle factor for causing ipsilateral decrease in salivary secretion. [2] The acinar cells are dominant cells in serous secretion. Primarily they secrete isotonic primary saliva and then the striated duct cells actively extract ions to render the saliva hypotonic as it passes down the ducts toward the mouth. We hypothesized that prolonged usage of mobile phones causes decreased salivary flow rate due to increased radiation effect over the parotid, resulting in reduced activity of acinar cells.

In the present study, we considered individuals who used mobile phones for more than 2 h/day. Among them, 27 individuals used mobile phones up to 3 h and 23 individuals used them for more than 3 h. During prolonged usage of mobile phone, the skin adjacent to it becomes warm due to transmission of radiation and heat. [10],[11],[12] In the present study, 32 participants experienced the warm sensation around the ear on prolonged usage of mobile phones. Van Leeuwen et al. [4] stated that even the highest powered models of mobile phones generate at least 0.1°C heat. Monfrecola et al. [13] also described that cell phone radiation can alter cutaneous blood flow and cause elevation in skin perfusion when the gadget is placed near to skin.

In the present study, it was observed that the salivary flow rate in females was less as compared with males. This was in accordance with the study conducted by Inoue et al., [14] the rationale being the smaller gland size in females. In our study, changes in salivary flow rate of the parotid gland were observed, which was in accordance with the results of the studies conducted by Goldwein and Aframian [2] and Bhargava et al.[2],[6] They also observed that functional and volumetric changes induced in parotid glands are associated with excessive mobile phone use.


   Conclusion Top


In the present study, the rate of salivary secretion of parotid gland was seen to be reduced on the dominant side of mobile usage and found to be more in males when compared to females. Hence, it was concluded that there is change in the functional activities of the parotid gland with prolonged usage of mobile phones. Further studies on a large scale will be helpful to know the other biological effects of mobile phones which have not been found yet.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 
   References Top

1.
Makker K, Varghese A, Desai NR, Mouradi R, Agarwal A. Cell phones: Modern man's nemesis? Reprod Biomed Online 2009;18:148-57.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Goldwein O, Aframian DJ. The influence of handheld mobile phones on human parotid gland secretion. Oral Dis 2010;16:146-50.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Johansen C, Boice J Jr, McLaughlin J, Olsen J. Cellular telephones and cancer - A nationwide cohort study in Denmark. J Natl Cancer Inst 2001;93:203-7.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Van Leeuwen GM, Lagendijk JJ, Van Leersum BJ, Zwamborn AP, Hornsleth SN, Kotte AN. Calculation of change in brain temperatures due to exposure to a mobile phone. Phys Med Biol 1999;44:2367-79.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Lonn S, Ahlbom A, Christensen HC, Johansen C, Schüz J, Edström S, et al. Mobile phone use and risk of parotid gland tumor. Am J Epidemiol 2006;164:637-43.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.
Bhargava S, Motwani MB, Patni VM. Effect of handheld mobile phone use on parotid gland salivary flow rate and volume. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol 2012;114:200-6.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Andrzejak R, Poreba R, Poreba M, Derkacz A, Skalik R, Gac P, et al. The influence of the call with a mobile phone on heart rate variability parameters in healthy volunteers. Ind Health 2008;46:409-17.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Al-hazimi A. Effects of the call with the mobile phone on heart rate variability parameters of healthy young people. J Chem Pharm Res 2011;3:734-40.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Horowitz M, Soskolne WA. Cellular dynamics of rats' submaxillary gland during heat acclimatization. J Appl Physiol Respir Environ Exerc Physiol 1978;44:21-4.  Back to cited text no. 9
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10.
Sandström M, Wilen J, Oftedal G, Hansson Mild K. Mobile phone use and subjective symptoms. Comparison of symptoms experienced by users of analogue and digital mobile phones. Occup Med (Lond) 2001;51:25-35.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Anderson V, Rowley J. Measurements of skin surface temperature during mobile phone use. Bioelectromagnetics 2007;28:159-62.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Straume A, Oftedal G, Johnson A. Skin temperature increase caused by a mobile phone: A methodological infrared camera study. Bioelectromagnetics 2005;26:510-9.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
Monfrecola G, Moffa G, Procaccini EM. Nonionizing electromagnetic radiations, emitted by a cellular phone, modify cutaneous blood flow. Dermatology 2003;207:10-4.  Back to cited text no. 13
    
14.
Inoue H, Ono K, Masuda W, Morimoto Y, Tanaka T, Yokota M, et al. Gender difference in unstimulated whole saliva flow rate and salivary gland sizes. Arch Oral Biol 2006;51:1055-60.  Back to cited text no. 14
    


    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3]
 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4], [Table 5], [Table 6]



 

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