Health risks of electromagnetic fields. Part II: Evaluation and assessment of radio frequency radiation

Crit Rev Biomed Eng. 2003;31(3):197-254. doi: 10.1615/critrevbiomedeng.v31.i3.20.


The increasing use of different radio frequency (RF)-emitting devices in residential and occupational settings has raised concerns about possible health effects of RF energy emitted by such devices. The debate about the potential risks associated with RF fields will persist with the prevalent network-connected wireless products and services targeting the marketplace for all kinds of consumer use. The aim of this article is to provide biomedical researchers with a review and critical evaluation of the current literature on acute and long-term health risks associated with RF radiation (RFR). Issues examined include safety standards for RFR; dosimetry and measurement surveys; and toxicological, epidemiological, and clinical studies of health outcomes that may be associated with RFR. Overall, the existing evidence for a causal relationship between RFR and adverse health effects is limited. Additional research is needed to clarify possible associations between RFR and biological effects noted in some studies. Particular attention should be directed toward long-term, low-level exposure to RFR.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chronic Disease / epidemiology
  • Electromagnetic Fields / adverse effects*
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Environmental Exposure / analysis
  • Humans
  • Occupational Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Occupational Exposure / analysis
  • Radio Waves / adverse effects*
  • Risk Assessment