Name: Leesa Heffler

Location: Australia

On 17th June 2009 I spoke on a NOKIA 6120 mobile phone for the duration of the battery life as part of my job as a Project Engineer, while working for the Road and Traffic Authority of New South Wales (RTA).

Previous to this period of working for the RTA, for many years I had only used my personal mobile phone, which was one I had purchased while living in Switzerland (when I was a student there). For years, I infrequently spoke on my Swiss mobile phone and never for long periods of time. But I regularly used it for texting my friends.

On the 17th June 2009, I started to feel unwell during all the phone calls I made on the NOKIA 6120.

It’s difficult to describe the initial symptoms towards the end of those phone calls which occurred over an approximately 2 hour period. But it was like I felt a loss of energy in my whole body.

Then about half an hour after I finished speaking on the NOKIA 6120, I started to feel that my brain was being squeezed and my vision was being affected. I also had some difficulty breathing.

That night, I was feeling very dizzy, I had terrible visual disturbance, continued to feel that there was a pressure inside my head, and I had terrible head pains, especially at the front of my head, as well as a feeling of numbness at the back part of my brain.

The next morning I woke up with terribly loud ringing in my ears and horrendous dizziness, visual disturbance, nausea, confusion, pressure in my head, head pains, brain numbness, generalised body weakness etc.

I could describe some of my sensations as being a combination of feeling very drunk and feeling sea sick on a boat at sea in rough seas.

I had trouble driving the car safely as I felt very disorientated. I could not sense motion in the car. I had trouble putting together and speaking coherent sentences.

I went to the hospital over the weekend and the ER doctor sent me away saying that it was just a migraine. The next Monday I went to another doctor and he ordered me a CT scan of my brain. It showed brain swelling and what they thought was a pineal cyst.

After the CT brain scan, the symptoms got even worse. The doctor wanted to do another CT brain scan with contrast immediately after the first one but I refused due to the worsening of my symptoms with the first CT brain scan.

The doctor sent me straight to the John Hunter Hospital where I was admitted and remained for about 6 days. A few days after I was admitted to hospital the doctor ordered an MRI of my brain. By then the swelling had gone down as it was not evident on the follow up structural MRI. The doctor was unsure as to the cause of my symptoms.

I told them I thought it was from the mobile phone radiation and they said they hadn’t seen anybody experience this before. Finally I left the hospital when there was nothing more they could do for me.

After I left hospital, I continued to suffer debilitating symptoms of dizziness, extreme tiredness and extreme fatigue, constant disabling nausea, chronic head pains, brain numbness, memory loss, confusion, generalised body weakness, difficulty putting together and speaking coherent sentences etc.

Just taking a shower was extremely difficult because of the mental effort and physical effort required (with these symptoms) to get my clothes out of the wardrobe and physically take a shower.

I could no longer work with this degree of disability and my parents drove down and collected me from Newcastle and brought me back to live with them on their rural property in Queensland.

In Queensland, I persuaded another doctor to order another structural MRI of my brain but I realised after that MRI that my symptoms became even worse.

The brain MRI scan showed no structural damage. I’ve since learnt that functional damage does not show up on a structural MRI.

By the time I realised that structural MRIs were futile in revealing my brain and body dysfunction, I no longer wished to submit my brain to any further MRI microwave radiation anyway.

I was desperate to understand what had happened and how to help myself, but no doctor I went to could help me and often when I went to see male doctors, they’d just say my symptoms were psychological.

I’d explain that I have a first class honours degree in Civil Engineering from the Queensland University of Technology and a Masters by Research in Structural Engineering in a very difficult subject from the University of Newcastle and I had travelled the world studying.

I was not crazy, I had just become very sick and disabled due to the radiation exposure I’d had from the mobile phone.

A couple of doctors diagnosed me with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia and Multiple Chemical Sensitivities.

It’s true that these medical diagnosis, as well as “Electromagnetically Hypersensitive”, described my constellation of symptoms.

For the first year after I came to live with my parents, I got sicker. I had uncontrollable chronic migraines 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.

As well, I had severe fatigue, chronic, uncontrollable nausea, memory loss, dizziness, visual disturbance, brain numbness, generalised body weakness and muscle tightness. I also became highly, highly chemically sensitive to everything in my environment.

The breathing difficulties continued. I also struggled to do simple tasks like read due to the visual disturbance, brain/physical fatigue and generalised brain dysfunction issues I had.

All medications doctors would try to prescribe me only made me sicker and more sleepy. I could not drive my car anywhere and rarely ventured away from the property.

Mum became my carer. Obviously I would not allow a mobile phone, cordless phone, microwave, wifi etc near my body. I was terrified of them and their effects on me.

To this day, if I go near a cordless phone, my brain feels like it’s been electrically shocked, and I feel disorientated and my brain becomes more numb. If I’m exposed to too much mobile phone tower radiation, I feel like my whole nervous system is burning and my brain feels more numb, and the nausea and headaches increase.
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