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June 3, 1988

Sublethal Exposure to Microwave Radar-Reply

Author Affiliations

University of Miami School of Medicine/ Jackson Memorial Medical Center

University of Miami School of Medicine/ Jackson Memorial Medical Center

JAMA. 1988;259(21):3130. doi:10.1001/jama.1988.03720210019018

In Reply. —Dr Forman states that in our letter we did not specify the parameters of the microwave field to which our patient was exposed. We contacted the Air Force and were informed that this information is considered classified and not available to civilians. We were not aware that Forman and colleagues1 as well as Williams and Webb2 had previously described cases similar to ours; we regret this omission. The psychological symptoms that occurred in their patients as well as in our patient were attributed to posttraumatic stress disorder. There is evidence that radar technicians who suffered behavioral changes following exposure to 1 to 10 GHz of radiation demonstrated abnormal band patterns in cerebrospinal fluid protein electrophoresis.3 It is unknown if this abnormal pattern could account for the symptoms observed.

In Reply. Dr Forman also points out that a previously reported case has been discredited.4,5 The aforementioned case