Self-reported mobile phone use and semen parameters among men from a fertility clinic

Reprod Toxicol. 2017 Jan:67:42-47. doi: 10.1016/j.reprotox.2016.11.008. Epub 2016 Nov 9.


There is increasing concern that use of mobile phones, a source of low-level radio-frequency electromagnetic fields, may be associated with poor semen quality, but the epidemiologic evidence is limited and conflicting. The relationship between mobile phone use patterns and markers of semen quality was explored in a longitudinal cohort study of 153 men that attended an academic fertility clinic in Boston, Massachusetts. Information on mobile phone use duration, headset or earpiece use, and the body location in which the mobile phone was carried was ascertained via nurse-administered questionnaire. Semen samples (n=350) were collected and analyzed onsite. To account for multiple semen samples per man, linear mixed models with random intercepts were used to investigate the association between mobile phone use and semen parameters. Overall, there was no evidence for a relationship between mobile phone use and semen quality.

Keywords: Electromagnetic fields; Epidemiology; Longitudinal studies; Mobile phones; Reproductive health; Semen quality.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cell Phone Use / adverse effects*
  • Cell Phone Use / trends
  • Fertility / radiation effects*
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Radio Waves / adverse effects*
  • Self Report
  • Semen / radiation effects*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Young Adult