Electromagnetic fields - do they pose a cardiovascular risk?

Author: D Parizek1, N Visnovcova, K Hamza Sladicekova, J Misek, J Jakus, J Jakusova, M Kohan, Z Visnovcová, N Ferencova, I Tonhajzerova
1 Department of Medical Biophysics, Jessenius Faculty of Medicine, Comenius University, Martin, Slovak Republic. jan.jakus@uniba.sk, parizek4@uniba.sk.
Conference/Journal: Physiol Res
Date published: 2023 Apr 30
Other: Volume ID: 72 , Issue ID: 2 , Pages: 199-208 , Word Count: 264

Mobile wireless communication technologies have now become an everyday part of our lives, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Monitoring the autonomous system under exposition to electromagnetic fields may play an important role in broading of our still limited knowledge on their effect on human body. Thus, we studied the interaction of the high frequency electromagnetic field (HF EMF) with living body and its effect on the autonomic control of heart rate using Heart Rate Variability (HRV) linear and nonlinear analyses in healthy volunteers. A group of young healthy probands (n=30, age mean: 24.2 ± 3.5 years) without any symptoms of disease was exposed to EMF with f=2400 MHz (Wi Fi), and f=2600 MHz (4G) for 5 minutes applied on the chest area. The short-term heart rate variability (HRV) metrics were used as an indicator of complex cardiac autonomic control. The evaluated HRV parameters: RR interval (ms), high frequency spectral power (HF-HRV in [ln(ms2)]) as an index of cardiovagal control, and a symbolic dynamic index of 0V %, indicating cardiac sympathetic activity. The cardiac-linked parasympathetic index HF-HRV was significantly reduced (p =0.036) and sympathetically mediated HRV index 0V % was significantly higher (p=0.002) during EMF exposure at 2400 MHz (Wi-Fi), compared to simulated 4G frequency 2600 MHz. No significant differences were found in the RR intervals. Our results revealed a shift in cardiac autonomic regulation towards sympathetic overactivity and parasympathetic underactivity indexed by HRV parameters during EMF exposure in young healthy persons. It seems that HF EMF exposure results in abnormal complex cardiac autonomic regulatory integrity which may be associated with higher risk of later cardiovascular complications already in healthy probands.

PMID: 37159854