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Smartphones that let us grow horns? Study suggests, but critics doubt it



Technology can completely shape our lives, but also change our bodies in unexpected ways. Recent research indicates that small horn lines could grow on our skulls and that smartphones could be the cause of this change.

But do not panic.

One critic of the research says it holds "no water," while another says the hypothesis of the paper is only speculative.

Researchers David Shahar and Mark Sayers from the University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia, published their findings for the first time in 2016 and they followed her with a paper earlier this year in the journal Scientific Reports. The study found a second life after the BBC published an article titled "How Modern Life Changes the Human Skeleton," which cited its work.

CNN has asked Shahar and Sayers for a comment.

In their research, Shahar and Sayers said, young people could develop tiny horn-like spines on the back of their heads, possibly caused by the weight shift of our head from the spine to the muscles at the back of the head and neck. This anatomical feature is referred to as an external occipital prominence or EOP.

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The possible cause of this weight shift? You probably guessed it. The researchers suspect that this is due to poor posture caused by people who tilt their heads forward due to the use of phones and mobile devices.

In their first study, the two researchers set a threshold of 5 millimeters to record an EOP and considered it an increased EOP if it exceeded 10 millimeters in length. They found that 41% of participants aged 18 to 30 years had an enlarged EOP in their skulls.

These types of bone spores are more common in the elderly and are considered to be a normal part of the aging process. However, Shahar and Sayers believe that technological advances have changed the timeline for this type of bone growth.

In their second work, a larger sample of 1,200 x-rays for 18- to 86-year-olds was examined. Thirty-three percent of subjects had bone growth, but strangely, growth declined with age.

"I've been increasingly clinically active for 20 years and only in the last decade I've found that my patients have this growth on their skull," Shahar told the BBC.

But not all agree with the researchers' ideas.

John Hawks, the Vilas Borghesi professor of excellence in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said, "This study does not contain water."

Hawks noted that the study lacked a table of results That would provide more detailed information about their results, and that there are contradictions between the text and diagrams in the study.

Hawks believes that the presented data is not consistently measured.

"Because there is no information on the duration or frequency of use of handheld devices in this study, it is not possible to draw data co. A correlation between the observations of increased EOPs and the use of handheld devices," explains Dr. Mariana Kersh, assistant professor at the Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and director of the Tissue Biomechanics Laboratory opposite CNN. "There are definitely no known causes and effects in this study.

" The hypothesis regarding the role of using handheld devices is purely speculative and not based on data presented in this study.

The study lacks a control group and the radiographs are from patients who had to visit a chiropractor whose neck problems were severe enough to take X-rays that may not give the best picture of the whole population.

Also a change The posture alone can not be the cause enough to stimulate such significant bone adaptation.

"Bone adaptation is usually in response to dynamic, repetitive movements that the body is not used to," Kersh said of the bone must also be large enough (higher than usual) to induce an adaptation With what we know about how bones respond to mechanical stress, changing the posture alone would probably not lead to bone changes, especially within a single one Life.

differing from those of Shahar un d Sayer proposed hypothetical charges differ. "


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