Consumer Health Digest #06-52

Your Weekly Update of News and Reviews
December 26, 2006

Consumer Health Digest is a free weekly e-mail newsletter edited by Stephen Barrett, M.D., and cosponsored by NCAHF and Quackwatch. It summarizes scientific reports; legislative developments; enforcement actions; news reports; Web site evaluations; recommended and nonrecommended books; and other information relevant to consumer protection and consumer decision-making.

Long-term study finds no cell phone-cancer connection. Researchers at the Danish Institute of Cancer Epidemiology in Copenhagen have found no evidence that cell-phone use increases the incidence of tumors. The study included 420,095 cell-phone users who first subscribed between 1982 and 1995 and were followed for an average of 8.5 years. The study was done in response to concerns that the electromagnetic fields that the phones emit might lead to brain tumors, salivary gland tumors, eye tumors, or leukemia. [Schüz J and others. Cellular telephone use and cancer risk: Update of a nationwide Danish cohort. Journal of the National Cancer Institute 98:1707-1713, 2006]

FTC gets more power to stop foreign spammers. Congress has given the FTC more power to share information with foreign agencies and to pursue spammers in foreign countries. The recently enacted U.S. SAFE WEB Act of 2005:

Leading "NICO" proponent facing disciplinary action. Wesley R. Shankland, II, D.D.S., who operates the Central Ohio Center for Facial Pain in Columbus, Ohio, has been notified that the Ohio State Dental Board intends to consider whether to discipline or suspend his license. The official notice indicates that the board is concerned about his care of twelve patients. The document charges that he:

Shankland is a leading proponent of "neuralgia inducing cavitational osteonecrosis" ("NICO") and improperly advises that amalgam fillings and root-canal-treated teeth are problematic. The dental board's notice does not specify whether any of its concerns are related to these nonstandard theories and practices.

Major nutrition text updated. The International Life Sciences Institute has published a two-volume 9th edition of its highly respected reference book, Current Knowledge in Nutrition. The first volume focuses on individual vitamins, minerals, and other topics related to basic nutrition. The second covers nutrition and the life cycle; nutrition and immunity; nutrition and chronic disease; healthful eating; and other topics related to public health and clinical nutrition. Although the book is intended for a professional audience, most parts are written in a style that many laypersons can understand. The cost is $80 per volume or $110 for the set plus $10 per volume for shipping within North America. Order forms and sample content are available at

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This page was posted on December 28, 2006.