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Laptop WiFi May Damage Sperm, Study Suggests

Laptop Wifi Sperm

The Huffington Post   First Posted: 11/29/11 11:53 AM ET Updated: 11/29/11 06:10 PM ET

Men, might want to consider keeping that laptop off your lap.

A new study in the journal Fertility and Sterility found that when exposing sperm taken from 29 men to electromagnetic radiation from laptop WiFi for four hours, the sperm had DNA damage and decreased motility.

Reuters reports that about 25 percent of the sperm had stopped moving after the four-hour laptop radiation exposure, while just 14 percent of the sperm had stopped moving when kept away from a computer. Nine percent of the radiation-exposed sperm had DNA damage, which was three times the damage of the non-radiation exposed sperm.

The researchers, from Nascentis Medicina Reproductiva in Argentina and the Eastern Virginia Medical School, wrote in the study that they "speculate that keeping a laptop connected wirelessly to the internet on the lap near the testes may result in decreased male fertility. Further in vitro and in vivo studies are needed to prove this contention."

However, it's important to note that the finding was only seen in semen samples taken from a man's body -- and not in a real-life setting, Reuters reported.

"This is not real-life biology, this is a completely artificial setting," Dr. Robert Oates, president of the Society for Male Reproduction and Urology, told Reuters. "It is scientifically interesting, but to me it doesn't have any human biological relevance."

In addition, Oates told Reuters that there's no scientific evidence from studies that pregnancy success is linked at all with the use of laptops.

Previously, a study from researchers at the State University of New York at Stony Brook showed another way laptop use might have an effect on men's fertility, according to AOL News.

AOL News reported:

Hot laptops have been found to increase the temperature of scrotums up to 35 degrees above the normal body temperature of 98.6 degrees. This increase has a well-documented harmful effect on sperm production, which may lead to infertility. Other studies have found that heated car seats have a similar effect on sperm production.

And aside from sperm production, the heat emitted from laptops could also lead to a condition coined "toasted skin syndrome," which can lead to skin discoloration and even skin damage that could possibly put you at risk of skin cancer, CBS News reported.

Dr. Kimberley Salkey, an assistant dermatology professor at Eastern Virginia Medical School, told CBS News that skin burned by a laptop looks, under a microscope, similar to that of skin that has been damaged over a long period of time by the sun.

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