Light Bulb Warning

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Story Updated: Aug 6, 2012

If you've gone green, it's highly likely you have CFL bulbs in your home. These compact fluorescent light bulbs are the ones that look like curly cues, and are sold as "energy efficient" alternatives to traditional incandescent lighting.

Now, researchers at Stony Brook University have found that CFL bulbs may leak UV rays that can harm your skin.

The Stony Brook team purchased a variety of CFL bulbs from different manufacturers at several locations.

When tested in their lab, all of them had cracks or bald spots in their phosphor coating, which appeared to allow both UVA and UVC rays to be emitted.

Two types of healthy human skin tissue were then exposed to the same bulbs. The results according to the lead researcher... the response of healthy skin cells to UV emitted from CFL bulbs is consistent with damage from ultraviolet radiation.

Traditional incandescent lights bulbs tested the same way had no effect on skin.

The takeaway...researchers stress that consumers should avoid using compact fluorescent light bulbs at close distances.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with the news doctors are reading, health news that matters to you.

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