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Keywords:

  • microwave exposure;
  • electroencephalogram;
  • exposure level;
  • dose-dependence;
  • field strength

Abstract

This study is aimed at evaluating the effect of microwave radiation on human brain bioelectric activity at different levels of exposure. For this purpose, 450 MHz microwave exposure modulated at 40 Hz frequency was applied to a group of 15 healthy volunteers at two different specific absorption rate (SAR) levels: a higher level of 0.303 W/kg (field strength 24.5 V/m) and a lower level of 0.003 W/kg (field strength 2.45 V/m). Ten exposure cycles (1 min off and 1 min on) at fixed SAR values were applied. A resting eyes-closed electroencephalogram (EEG) was continuously recorded. Results showed a statistically significant increase in the EEG power in the EEG beta2 (157%), beta1 (61%) and alpha (68%) frequency bands at the higher SAR level, and in the beta2 (39%) frequency band at the lower SAR level. Statistically significant changes were detected for six individual subjects in the EEG alpha band and four subjects in the beta1 and beta2 bands at the higher SAR level; three subjects were affected in the alpha, beta1 and beta2 bands at the lower SAR level. The study showed that decreasing the SAR 100 times reduced the related changes in the EEG three to six times and the number of affected subjects, but did not exclude the effect. Bioelectromagnetics 34:264–274, 2013. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.