Answer to Question #1408 Submitted to "Ask the Experts"
The following question was answered by an expert in the appropriate field:
I am about four-and-a-half months pregnant and I am attending school. Is using a computer every day dangerous for the baby? I'm on it from 1 to 4:15 p.m. every day for class. There are about nine computers running most of the time. What could happen to my baby? As of today I'm going to quit using the computer until I get more information.
You really should not be worried about using a computer because you are pregnant, as long as you are comfortable working, that is, you are not developing physical problems. The computer emits midrange microwave radiation, not x rays. Microwave radiation is nonionizing and, at the exposure that you receive from a computer, is not a risk for birth defects or miscarriage. If you are young and healthy and have no reproductive problems or a family history of reproductive problems, your risk for birth defects is 3 percent and for miscarriage is 15 percent. Neither you nor I can change these risks. This is the background risk for women with normal pregnancies and negative family histories. Good luck with your pregnancy.
Robert Brent, MD, PhD