BlackBerry Smartphones May Cause Allergic Reactions

Allergist

At the Annual Scientific Meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, held this weekend, researchers present findings on the allergenic properties of cell phones. The study tested a wide segment of phones for two common allergens: cobalt, and nickel. Of the phones tested, BlackBerry devices contained the highest levels of allergenic material found across the smartphone segment.

"Approximately one-third of all Blackberries contain nickel, but neither cobalt nor nickel was detected in iPhones or Droids. Both metals can cause an allergic reaction including dry, itchy patches along the cheek bones, jaw line and ears."  – Allergist Tania Mucci, M.D., lead study author and ACAAI member. "

Nickel was chosen as the 2008 Allergen of the Year as it is believed to be the most common cause of contact dermatitis. One in eight people worldwide have a nickel allergy, not a good market segment for BlackBerry to alienate.

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