Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Airport body scanners 'could give you cancer', warns expert

Don't you ever get tired of being treated like a human lab rat?

    UK Daily Mail -

    Full body scanners at airports could increase your risk of skin cancer, experts warn.

    The X-ray machines have been brought in at Manchester, Gatwick and Heathrow.

    But scientists say radiation from the scanners has been underestimated and could be particularly risky for children.

    They say that the low level beam does deliver a small dose of radiation to the body but because the beam concentrates on the skin - one of the most radiation-sensitive organs of the human body - that dose may be up to 20 times higher than first estimated.

    An airport staff member demonstrates a full body scan at  Manchester Airport

    An airport staff member demonstrates a full body scan at Manchester
    Airport. Now a U.S expert has said the X-Ray may deliver a higher
    radiation dose to the skin than first thought

    Dr David Brenner, head of Columbia University's centre for radiological research, said although the danger posed to the individual passenger is 'very low', he is urging researchers to carry out more tests on the device to look at the way it affects specific groups who could be more sensitive to radiation.

    He says children and passengers with gene mutations - around one in 20 of the population - are more at risk as they are less able to repair X-ray damage to their DNA.

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