Cellphones Linked to Nasty Skin Outbreaks

Dennis Faas's picture

Feel like all those warnings about cellphones giving you cancer is just a load of baloney? You're probably right. However, dermatologists now warn that at the very least these mobile devices can cause awful skin breakouts!

B.A.D., the British Association of Dermatologists, are now actively warning physicians in that country to be aware that "mobile phone dermatitis" is for real. The breakout appears as a rash that usually develops across the face and/or fingers. The ailment, which can be frighteningly red and painfully itchy, is actually caused by consistent contact with shiny cellphones.

Before you laugh, B.A.D. assure people that there have indeed been a number of cases where the nickel alloy found in these phones caused irritation after long period of contact with the skin. However, keep in mind that the nickel alloy is key: without it, there's rarely a problem.

Surprisingly, B.A.D. doesn't actually fault cheaper phones, but instead points fingers at higher priced devices. According to a spokesperson for the British Association of Dermatologists, "Closer investigation revealed that the reaction was caused by nickel in the mobile phone handsets, where it is often found in the casing or buttons, particularly in the most fashionable models." Huh. So it might just pay to buy those throw-away clunkers. (Source: tgdaily.com)

Considering the long history of nickel allergies, the news isn't all that particularly surprising (some 30 per cent of Britons have these allergies). What is surprising is the decision by cellphone companies, particularly those marketing the higher-end models, to push a device that has a one-in-three chance of irritating the user. Considering the price of these phones, that's certainly not the demographic satisfied with an early-morning breakout.

The news gets even worse for women: according to B.A.D., gals are more likely to be affected by "mobile phone dermatitis" because the chances are greater that they have acquired a sensitivity to nickel by wearing cheap jewelry.

Researchers found that out of 22 popular cellphones, 10, or nearly half, contained nickel. (Source: reuters.com)

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