Microwave oven cataracts

I really wanted to write a post about microwave ovens and the very cool sparks that result from some metals that might accidently have found their way into the microwave. I think I have a lot to write about (or at least further study by me) when it comes to microwave ovens though. After reading a couple of websites and watching some fun videos I saw that microwave energy can affect the lens in our eye. I had no idea.

The lens in our eye, that many of my patients think is the outer clear part of the eye (that’s called the cornea), has no blood supply. And the cornea doesn’t either, incidently. Microwave energy, if powerful enough, could heat up the lens. The theory this could cause damage is because there’s no blood flow in the lens. If there were, ¬†blood could carry the heat away. Amazing that neither our lens nor our cornea have a blood supply.

But what are the chances of getting a cataract from a microwave oven’s radiation? I don’t know and I couldn’t find too much about the “incidence” but it boils down to this. If your microwave was dropped or somehow bent, there could be leaking microwaves coming out. I suppose leaking microwaves wouldn’t be that big of a problem unless you put your eye right in front of that leaking spot. But, no sense is putting your eye right in front of it either way unless you’re just checking your hot pockets.

Now how are you going to tell if your microwave leaks! Have I got a funny one for you. And this makes sense. The microwave energy is about the same frequency as our wireless networks wavelength at home. That’s around 2.4GHz (yeah, I know, there are other wireless frequencies too). Unplug your microwave, put your wirelessly connected laptop in your microwave with the door closed. If you can access your laptop through some sort of remote program on another computer, or just ping your laptop successfully, you have a leak. The wireless signal went through to the inside of the microwave oven. But that’s not the only way! I’ll just give you a link below to read other interesting ways.

I think the bottom line is this is all highly unlikely to happen…cataracts from microwave ovens…goes to show you that the everyday stuff has potential for harm though. And now I’ll go try one of those experiments I found you can do using a microwave oven. To my kids, don’t do this when daddy isn’t here.



microwave oven diagram

microwave oven diagram

electromagnetic spectrum


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