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After more than two decades of research, there are still many uncertainties concerning the effects of microwave exposure. Animal experiments have revealed apparent sensitivities at exposure levels below those commonly associated with the only known effect of microwave absorption: tissue heating. The effects fall into three categories: gross thermal damage due to high-intensity exposure, microwave-specific thermal effects at intermediate intensities, and apparently nonthermal effects at low intensities. Whereas the first category of effects are reasonably well understood, the second and third categories are not. Consideration of the unique way microwaves are absorbed in living systems provides some clues for resolving uncertainties in this area.
BioScience © 1983 American Institute of Biological Sciences