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Topic Title: Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity
Topic Summary: Anyone had any experience
Created On: 03 August 2012 10:10 AM
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 03 August 2012 10:10 AM
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DR2366

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Had a call from a customer who has this condition. Asked me to check earthing etc but reported getting symptoms from the plastic bath.

Am keen to help in anyway I can but what practically can I do other than check against the requirements of BS7671.

From what I have read it seems to be something which is more product related ie phones, wireless devices and the like.

Your inputs appreciated.

Ps it would appear to be a very real condition for her and I'm certainly not going to tell her that its all in her head.
 03 August 2012 10:35 AM
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KFH

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I have heard about people with this complaint. Radio waves appear to be the main culprit but some claim sensitivity to the electromagnetic radiation given off by mains cables. You could try removing all types of RF generators: mobile phones, wireless phones, CFLs, etc to see if there is a difference. Otherwise you could try to produce a faraday cage around a room and remove electricity cables from the room to make it completely quiet electromagnetic radiation wise.
 03 August 2012 10:40 AM
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DR2366

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EMF info house wiring

This seems to make sense!
 03 August 2012 11:23 AM
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Jaymack

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Originally posted by: DR2366
getting symptoms from the plastic bath.


A fella called Cockburn is an expert on this issue, he frequents this forum from time to time; he may respond, but he's probably busy on trivial pursuits, such as testing the insulation on his neon screwdriver and footwear to the 16th edition.

Seriously though, glue an earth connection such as a brass bolt on the plastic bath, with a dummy Green and Yellow 4mm² cable and labelled Safety Earth etc.

Otherwise recommend medical assistance.

Regards
 03 August 2012 11:59 AM
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BigRed

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Reminds me of a similar incident about a month ago, chap was getting shocks off what appeared to be a plastic bath. Earthing checkled, loops insulation etc all to no avail....until downstairs switched on the light in the room below. Seemed that there had been major flooding, metal in concrete installation of the 70's....salt, water and a copper waste pipe... you all know the rest. Know its not EMC related, but still painful!
could always tell them that you have addd extra earthing, crossbond taps and see if he notices a difference...:-)
 03 August 2012 12:58 PM
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ebee

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Originally posted by: DR2366

EMF info house wiring



This seems to make sense!



Extract from page 10
"Metal radiators are normally earthed through the legally required earth bonding to the metal
water pipes. If plastic pipes are used, it is still recommended that most metal radiators are
earthed. This will require an earthing lead to the nearest mains electricity safety earthing point
(usually at the nearest socket)."

David Cockburn ?

-------------------------
Regards,
Ebee (M I S P N)

Knotted cables cause Lumpy Lektrik
 03 August 2012 02:01 PM
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rocknroll

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EHD (Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity Disorder) is something that has been around since the 70's and is on a par with hundreds of other psychological disorders, when I was at Sheffield in the early 90's taking various management courses relating to psychology this was one of the issues that was discussed, there is not a lot you can do from an electrician point of view as it is not electricity based, people develop symptoms of various kinds, headaches, hot flushes, palpitations, tingly skin and various other ailments and match them up to the variety of disorders in books, magazines and the internet and believe they have them, under therapy it is generally found that a recent or even a childhood traumatic event is the trigger for this.

If there really was a cure for this then the only solution is to remove yourself from electricity, phones, cars, computers etc; and plonk yourself in the middle of Dartmoor somewhere away from powerlines, radio masts and all the rest of things that could affect you, even then you would require a foil lined tent and groundsheet and foil lined suits because for millions of years the earth has been rotating in a magnetic field and giving off EMR, and the atmoshphere and other planets are bombarding the earth with EMR as well so there is no escape.

As Jaymack pointed out this is a medical problem.

Just to point out that this is a disorder not an illness and defined by us as; 'deeply ingrained and enduring behaviour patterns, manifesting themselves as inflexible responses to a broad range of personal and social situations'; they represent 'either extreme or significant deviations from the way the average individual in a given culture perceives, thinks, feels, and particularly relates to others' and are 'developmental conditions, which appear in childhood or adolescence and continue into adulthood'.

regards

-------------------------
"Take nothing but a picture,
leave nothing but footprints!"
-------------------------
"Oh! The drama of it all."
-------------------------
"You can throw all the philosophy you like at the problem, but at the end of the day it's just basic electrical theory!"
-------------------------

Edited: 03 August 2012 at 02:11 PM by rocknroll
 03 August 2012 02:08 PM
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Cremeegg

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Plenty of electricity up on Dartmoor RnR - although the Duchy make sure it's all buried so the view isnt spoilt - no so successful in getting TV masts obscured though..
 03 August 2012 08:31 PM
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Zs

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DR2366, I think it depends on how much you want to get involved but checking against BS7671 is certainly a good starting point. I've had a couple of these type of issues over the years. My view is to treat it as real. It could be, who knows?

The first was a lady who was convinced she was suffering from copper poisoning from her pipes and in truth the bath water was a touch blue. For her I ran detailed checks for voltage in the pipes and all the usual earthing checks, upgraded her main earthing conductor (even though calculations on the existing one were fine, she wanted a 16mm once I had mentioned it). Once that was all in order the water authority agreed to come out to her and I don't know the outcome.

The next was an elderly lady in a very grand new-build townhouse which was incredibly dry. To the extent that her valuable antiques were splitting at their seams and she was ageing rapidly. No fresh air in the place at all. I found a volt stick was lighting up even if you held it on a plasterboard wall or ceiling so there was definitely inductance in the house. That turned out to be caused by celotex around the pumped underfloor heating on each of the three floors, carrying from the ring finals and lighting circuits that were against the foil.

In her case I went the extra mile and installed half a dozen baby bedroom humidifiers around the house. From amazon. Ones which come with a guage to tell you the humidity level. It was startlingly low when we first put them in and they chugged solidly for two days before setlling down.

The humidifier route might be of interest to your client because static doesn't really happen in humid rooms and she might actually feel some benefit from them. Great for the skin. Air purifiers might be a good call too.

My parents have a power line running over their garden and I once noticed the grass underneath was going brown in a perfect straight line. I made a call to the DNO and within three days it had been changed.

As for idiopathic conditions..I've mentioned an allergy to you before and that is still rumbling on. When I read that 'urticaria' can be idiopathic I freaked out thinking it meant psychosomatic (sp?). It most definitely isn't in my head but I now learn that idiopathic actually means 'no cause'. That is still rumbling on and if I gon't get my hands around a Mac Donalds or a pizza soon I'm going to go mad. I'm all organic and just about on green salad and cous cous at the moment. It's hell but part of the process of sorting it all out to which I have committed. I too am calling on the help of professionals so I kind of see where your client is coming from with this one.

I reckon the peace of mind of knowing that the electrics are safe will be a great step forward for your client.

Out for lunch tomorrow though....bring it on!

Zs
 05 August 2012 06:20 AM
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ebee

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It`s about time someone did some research and found us benefits from background electric/magnetic fields , radiation, solar flares, radon gas, arsenic, smog, flu, food poisoning, asbestos dust, table salt etc.

Well if they can do it with foodstuffs and alcohol then why not?

Lots of things have good AND bad sides to them!

-------------------------
Regards,
Ebee (M I S P N)

Knotted cables cause Lumpy Lektrik
 05 August 2012 08:16 AM
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deleted_1_Grizzly01

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Originally posted by: jackdawson

The Electromagnet is the best if you are using wires in your house.Quality of these wires are very good and protect fro fire also.These wires can be used in making machines as well as other products also.


Cor. Wires, eh?
Who'd have thought it?
 05 August 2012 09:12 AM
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Zs

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Interestingly unc, I wear a bioflow which is a wrist band containing two earth magnets with supposed health benefits. Powerful enough to pick up three pennies in a chain. I'm not sure sure sure if it does anything but it is supposed to keep the blood flowing regularly and I do notice if I forget to put it on for a couple of days. Colder fingers and toes. I don't subscribe to knitting my own macrobiotic yoghurt and tree hugging but I do think there is something as yet scientifically untapped about magnets, and quartz. Throw their relation to triangles into that mix and I could easily become a happy researcher. But let me just make it clear that it's not about karma and cosmos, I just reckon we've things yet to find out involving the physics surrounding these things.

Must go chant ohmmmmm and Weberrrrrrr over the new les paul.....

Zs
 05 August 2012 09:37 AM
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potential

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About 20 years ago I built an ac electromagnetic field detector using simple op amps, a coil (ferrite core), battery and a 50 microamp meter.

To be honest I was really surprised at how sensitive it was and how there were magnetic fields all over the place.
The hand-held device is held about waist height.
Just moving the device detected the earth's field but it was the radiating fields from underground cables I found disconcerting.
Some of the fields in and around roads/pavements are very large indeed and penetrate almost anything.
 08 August 2012 01:33 AM
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rogersmith7671

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I believe several studies have been undertaken regarding electromagnetic fields and their effects upon humans. Some results appear to show that contrary to the opinion of those who should know better. There may be real problems out there, I refer the readers of these pages the the statistical occourences of childhood leukemias and their proximity to supply grid emf's undertaken in the late 1990's Et,al

Regards
 08 August 2012 09:35 AM
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perspicacious

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Large study links power lines to childhood cancer
00:01 03 June 2005
NewScientist.com news service
Gaia Vince
Children living near overhead power lines may have an increased risk of leukemia but the association may not be causal, UK researchers say.

The confusing message, which comes from the largest study to date - of over 29,000 children with cancer - is that since "there is no biological mechanism to explain the higher risk", the results, "although statistically significant, may be due to chance".

The study - a collaboration between the Childhood Cancer Research Group at the University of Oxford and National Grid owners, Transco - looked at cancer data in England and Wales between 1962 and 1995, for children aged up to 15 years old.

They were able to map how far each child lived from a high voltage overhead power line. Comparing the children who had cancer with a control group of 29,000 children without cancer but who lived in comparable districts, found that children whose birth address was within 200 metres of an overhead power line had a 70% increased risk of leukemia. Children living 200 to 600 m away from power lines had a 20% increased risk.

"To put these results in perspective, our study shows that about five of the 400 cases of childhood leukemia every year may be linked to power lines - which is about 1% of cases," says Gerald Draper at Oxford University, who led the study. "The condition is very rare and people living near power lines should have no cause for concern."

However, the results are controversial, coming just one month after the major UK Childhood Cancer Study report, which declared that there was no risk to children living these distances away from power lines.

"Statistical artefact"
Although a link between childhood cancer and power lines has been suggested by previous studies, it has only been associated with high exposure - those living within about 60 m of an overhead power line. At the distances Draper looked at, the electromagnetic field created by the power lines should be too low to have any health effects, he says. They were much lower, for example, than those constantly experienced due to the Earth's magnetic field.

"We don't think it is possible that a magnetic field of these low magnitudes could have a causative effect on childhood leukemia," Draper says.

The increase in leukemia risk for those living at distances greater than 60 m was "difficult to interpret, but is most unlikely to be due to any residual electromagnetic field, or other exposures related to the power line", says David Grant, scientific director of Leukemia Research. "It cannot be excluded that it is a statistical artefact."

But given the statistical significance of their results, the researchers had considered other theories. One established link with the disease is low exposure to infection soon after birth - an effect seen most commonly in babies born to higher income, middle-class families, where early social mixing between infants is rarer. Draper's group looked at the population characteristics in areas immediately surrounding power lines.

They found that some were built in areas of low income housing and others in high-income areas. Looking at social status data alone, there was a 10% increase in leukemia for those in middle-class families, but these results were found to be independent of power line location data.

Corona ions
Another theory that the researchers tested, first mooted controversially in 1999 by Dennis Henshaw at Bristol University, UK, concerned "corona ion" effects. Henshaw proposed that the air immediately surrounding a high voltage power line or pylon becomes ionised by the electric field.

Corona ions combine with pollutants in the air, giving rise to charged airborne particles, which may be blown some distance away before being inhaled. Henshaw believes that once breathed in, the particles remain in the lungs, causing cancer.

The researchers attempted to test this theory with Henshaw, and found no discernable difference between leukemia cases upwind or downwind of the power cables. However, they admit that the testing procedure, although the best available at the time, was poor. They are preparing to conduct a more conclusive test, with Henshaw's newly devised equipment. He believes the excess number of children found to have leukemia due to power lines - five per year - "may be the tip of the iceberg".

This paper forms part of Draper's larger study, which is also looking at electromagnetic doses at different distances from power lines.

Journal reference: British Medical Journal (vol 330, p 1290)
 08 August 2012 10:18 AM
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AJJewsbury

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"there is no biological mechanism to explain the higher risk"

I'm always suspicious of claims along the lines of 'we don't know of a mechanism that would allow it to work, therefore it can't'.

I imagine a physicist patiently explaining that the laws of physics are well known and that mass of a photon is so small that launching even a considerable number at a moving massive object would have no significant effect on its velocity and that the idea that the frequency of the photons makes any difference is frankly laughable ... and then finding that large lorries do in fact stop at red traffic lights.

- Andy.
 08 August 2012 11:18 AM
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FizzleBang

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My old dad was an old time Radio Ham.

I spent my childhood in his radio shack while he communicated with the world.

It seemed to be a "known fact" back then (late 60's early 70's) that high power electromagnetic fields caused headaches.

Perhaps it was psychosomatic but we were sure we could "feel" something when he wound up some big old RF output valves on the HF bands. His favourite trick was to hold a fluorescent tube in his hand and make it glow without any electrical connections.

Neighbours TV's had been know to speak to them even when switched off.

And yes, after spending hours in there I'd sometimes feel fatigued though we always put that down to all the static and "bad air" coming off the equipment.

Maybe nothing in it but the old boy died a couple of years ago of a rare cancer - Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma. Something caused it....

My own take is that there are a lot of paranoid people out there. Some like to wear aluminium foil hats and the like.
There will be some who are certain that everything bad in their life is caused by electromagnetic fields.
There may well be some people who don't actually realise that their health is being compromised by electromagnetism.

-------------------------
"I learned very early the difference between knowing
the name of something and knowing something". - Richard P. Feynman
 17 October 2012 11:50 AM
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impvan

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Given the absolute raging certainty that electricity has lengthened my life by purifying my drinking water, keeping my food cold, and making antibiotics easily available; I don't actually mind a slight and hypothetical risk that the same electricity might be shortening my life too.
 17 October 2012 12:29 PM
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rocknroll

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LOL Well considering for a few years now (a few million or more) the atmosphere and the earth has been bombarding everyone and their dog with electro-magnetic radiation I dont think somehow you can blame Apple for that one.

regards

-------------------------
"Take nothing but a picture,
leave nothing but footprints!"
-------------------------
"Oh! The drama of it all."
-------------------------
"You can throw all the philosophy you like at the problem, but at the end of the day it's just basic electrical theory!"
-------------------------
 17 October 2012 12:48 PM
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OMS

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You misunderstand Funkmeister - we need a few conspiracy theories to divert attention away from the real conspiracies, Apple is a good enough place to lay the blame as any -

Regards

OMS

-------------------------
Failure is always an option
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