We investigated whether there is an interaction between distance from residence at birth to nearest power line and domestic radon and traffic-related air pollution, respectively, in relation to childhood leukemia risk. Further, we investigated whether adjusting for potential confounders alters the association between distance to nearest power line and childhood leukemia. We included 1024 cases aged
Early-life exposure to environmental microbial agents may be associated with the development of allergies. The aim of the study was to identify better ways to characterize microbial exposure as a predictor of respiratory symptoms and allergies.
A birth cohort of 410 children was followed up until 6 years of age. Bacterial endotoxin, 3-hydroxy fatty acids, N-acetyl-muramic acid, fungal extracellular polysaccharides (EPS) from Penicillium and Aspergillus spp., ß-D-glucan, ergosterol, and bacterial or fungal quantitative polymerase chain reactions (qPCRs) were analyzed from dust samples collected at 2 months of age. Asthma, wheezing, cough, and atopic dermatitis were assessed using repeated questionnaires. Specific IgEs were determined at the age of 1 and 6 years.
Only few associations were found between single microbial markers and the studied outcomes. In contrast, a score for the total quantity of microbial exposure, that is, sum of indicators for fungi (ergosterol), Gram-positive (muramic acid) bacteria, and Gram-negative (endotoxin) bacteria, was significantly (inverted-U shape) associated with asthma incidence (P
High rates of lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI), including bronchiolitis and pneumonia, have been reported in Inuit infants living in arctic Canada. We examined rates of LRTI in First Nations Canadian infants living in the Sioux Lookout Zone, in Northern Ontario.
A retrospective review of hospital admissions for LRTI during a 5-year period, in patients
Infections and immune responses have been suggested to play an important role in the etiology of schizophrenia. Several studies have reported associations between maternal infections during pregnancy and the child's risk of schizophrenia; however, infection during childhood and adolescence unrelated to maternal infection during pregnancy has not been studied to nearly the same extent and the results are far from conclusive. Data were drawn from 2 population-based registers, the Danish Psychiatric Central Register and the Danish National Hospital Register. We used a historical population-based cohort design and selected all individuals born in Denmark between 1981 and 1996 (n = 843 390). We identified all individuals with a first-time hospital contact with schizophrenia from 1991 through 2010. Out of the 3409 individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia, a total of 1549 individuals had had a hospital contact with infection before their schizophrenia diagnosis (45%). Our results indicate that individuals who have had a hospital contact with infection are more likely to develop schizophrenia (relative risk [RR] = 1.41; 95% CI: 1.32-1.51) than individuals who had not had such a hospital contact. Bacterial infection was the type of infection that was associated with the highest risk of schizophrenia (RR = 1.63; 95% CI: 1.47-1.82). Our study does not exclude that a certain type of infection may have a specific effect; yet, it does suggest that schizophrenia is associated with a wide range of infections. This association may be due to inflammatory responses affecting the brain or genetic and environmental risk factors aggregating in families.
Cites: Nature. 2009 Aug 6;460(7256):744-719571808
Cites: Med J Aust. 2009 Feb 16;190(4 Suppl):S17-2119220168
There was performed a comparative analysis of the dynamics of newly diagnosed and the overall morbidity of children's population of the Republic of Tatarstan (RT) and the city of Kazan of main classes of diseases for 2004- 2012 according to the statistical reporting form N12. As an assessment of the possible impact of environmental factors on the formation of separate groups of diseases and changes in the systems of the body there was used health risk assessment according to annual average concentrations of chemicals in the ambient air Average annual indices of prevalence for the most of classes of diseases in children (0-14 years) of the population of the Republic of Tatarstan (RT) and the city of Kazan 2004-2012 (per 1000 children) showed significant differences for most classes of diseases and their rise in children of the city. Results of the assessment of the non-carcinogenic risk based on evolutionary models determined the magnitude of additional risks for the respiratory system. Non-carcinogenic health risk is assessed before the age of 19 years as negligible, until the age of 36 years as a moderate, until the age of 45 years as highfor persons over 46 years as very high.
Division of Risk Management, Department of Environmental and Life Sciences, Karlstad University, Karlstad, Sweden; Centre for Public Safety, Karlstad University, Sweden. Electronic address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Residential fires represent the largest category of fatal fires in Sweden. The purpose of this study was to describe the epidemiology of fatal residential fires in Sweden and to identify clusters of events.
Data was collected from a database that combines information on fatal fires with data from forensic examinations and the Swedish Cause of Death-register. Mortality rates were calculated for different strata using population statistics and rescue service turnout reports. Cluster analysis was performed using multiple correspondence analysis with agglomerative hierarchical clustering.
Male sex, old age, smoking, and alcohol were identified as risk factors, and the most common primary injury diagnosis was exposure to toxic gases. Compared to non-fatal fires, fatal residential fires more often originated in the bedroom, were more often caused by smoking, and were more likely to occur at night. Six clusters were identified. The first two clusters were both smoking-related, but were separated into (1) fatalities that often involved elderly people, usually female, whose clothes were ignited (17% of the sample), (2) middle-aged (45-64years old), (often) intoxicated men, where the fire usually originated in furniture (30%). Other clusters that were identified in the analysis were related to (3) fires caused by technical fault, started in electrical installations in single houses (13%), (4) cooking appliances left on (8%), (5) events with unknown cause, room and object of origin (25%), and (6) deliberately set fires (7%).
Fatal residential fires were unevenly distributed in the Swedish population. To further reduce the incidence of fire mortality, specialized prevention efforts that focus on the different needs of each cluster are required.
Cooperation between various societal functions, e.g. rescue services, elderly care, psychiatric clinics and other social services, with an application of both human and technological interventions, should reduce residential fire mortality in Sweden.
Cell phone use during pregnancy is a public health concern. We investigated the association between maternal cell phone use in pregnancy and child's language, communication and motor skills at 3 and 5 years.
This prospective study includes 45,389 mother-child pairs, participants of the MoBa, recruited at mid-pregnancy from 1999 to 2008. Maternal frequency of cell phone use in early pregnancy and child language, communication and motor skills at 3 and 5 years, were assessed by questionnaires. Logistic regression was used to estimate the associations.
No cell phone use in early pregnancy was reported by 9.8% of women, while 39%, 46.9% and 4.3% of the women were categorized as low, medium and high cell phone users. Children of cell phone user mothers had 17% (OR = 0.83, 95% CI: 0.77, 0.89) lower adjusted risk of having low sentence complexity at 3 years, compared to children of non-users. The risk was 13%, 22% and 29% lower by low, medium and high maternal cell phone use. Additionally, children of cell phone users had lower risk of low motor skills score at 3 years, compared to children of non-users, but this association was not found at 5 years. We found no association between maternal cell phone use and low communication skills.
We reported a decreased risk of low language and motor skills at three years in relation to prenatal cell phone use, which might be explained by enhanced maternal-child interaction among cell phone users. No evidence of adverse neurodevelopmental effects of prenatal cell phone use was reported.
First, to explore item pools developed to measure the physical home environment of pre-school children and assess the psychometric properties of these item pools; second, to explore associations between this environment and vegetable consumption among Norwegian 3-5-year-olds.
Data were collected in three steps: (i) a parental web-based questionnaire assessing the child's vegetable intake and factors potentially influencing the child's vegetable consumption; (ii) direct observation of the children's fruit, berry and vegetable intakes at two meals in one day in the kindergarten; and (iii) a parental web-based 24 h recall.
The target group for this study was pre-school children born in 2010 and 2011, attending public or private kindergartens in the counties of Vestfold and Buskerud, Norway.
A total of 633 children participated.
Principal component analysis on the thirteen-item pool assessing availability/accessibility resulted in two factors labelled 'availability at home' and 'accessibility at home', while the eight-item pool assessing barriers resulted in two factors labelled 'serving barriers' and 'purchase barriers'. The psychometric properties of these factors were satisfactory. Linear regression of the associations between vegetable intake and the factors showed generally positive associations with 'availability at home' and 'accessibility at home' and negative associations with 'serving barriers'.
This age group has so far been understudied and there is a need for comparable studies. Our findings highlight the importance of targeting the physical home environment of pre-school children in future interventions as there are important modifiable factors that both promote and hinder vegetable consumption in this environment.
Exposure to moldy or damp indoor environments is associated with allergic disease in young children, but it is unclear whether the effects persist to adolescence. Our objective was to assess whether exposure to mold or dampness during infancy increases the risk of asthma, rhinitis, or IgE sensitization in children followed from birth to 16 years of age.
We collected questionnaire derived reports of mold or dampness indicators and allergic outcomes from 3798 children in a Swedish birth cohort (BAMSE). Sensitization was assessed from blood samples in 3293 children. Longitudinal associations between prevalent asthma, rhinitis, and IgE sensitization and mold or dampness indicators were assessed using generalized estimating equations.
Exposure to any mold or dampness indicator was associated with asthma up to 16 years of age (OR 1.31; 95% CI 1.08-1.59), while exposure to mold odor (OR 1.29; 95% CI 1.03-1.62) and visible mold (OR 1.28; 95% CI 1.04-1.58) were associated with rhinitis. Increased risks were observed for nonallergic asthma (OR 1.80; 95% CI 1.27-2.55) and rhinitis (OR 1.41; 95% CI 1.03-1.93). No association was observed between mold or dampness indicators and IgE sensitization. Exposure to any mold or dampness indicator was associated with persistent asthma (OR 1.73; 95% CI 1.20-2.50), but not with early-transient or late-onset asthma.
Exposure to mold or dampness during infancy increased the risk of asthma and rhinitis up to 16 years of age, particularly for nonallergic disease. Early exposure to mold or dampness appeared particularly associated with persistent asthma through adolescence.
Cites: PLoS One. 2014 Aug 19;9(8):e105125 PMID 25136984
Data of hygienic studies of air and soil during last 20 years have confirmed their correlating relationship with the general morbidity and a group of musculoskeletal diseases in children living in cities with the technogenic pollution of the environment. Their bones were established to grow unevenly and disproportionally, in 76% of children there have been violations in the development and growth of bones. The results of X-ray examination of hand bones in children and adolescents in the Irkutsk and Shelekhov cities are presented. Significant differences in morbidity patterns among children and adolescents including an increased incidence of musculoskeletal diseases by 5.6 in children and by 12 in adolescents have been revealed.
Most previous studies on the association between moisture damage and asthma have been cross-sectional and relied on self-reported exposure and health. The present authors studied the association by carrying out careful home inspections among new, clinically determined cases of asthma and controls. New cases of asthma aged 12-84 months (n = 121) were recruited prospectively and matched for year of birth, sex and living area with two randomly selected population controls (n = 241). Trained engineers visited all homes. Both cases and controls had lived >or=75% of their lifetime or the past 2 yrs in their current home. Risk of asthma increased with severity of moisture damage and presence of visible mould in the main living quarters but not in other areas of the house. Cases more often had damage in their bedroom. Associations were comparable for atopic and nonatopic asthma and for children aged >30 months or
The richest uranium ore bodies ever discovered (Cigar Lake and McArthur River) are presently under development in northeastern Saskatchewan. This subarctic region is also home to several operating uranium mines and aboriginal communities, partly dependent upon caribou for subsistence. Because of concerns over mining impacts and the efficient transfer of airborne radionuclides through the lichen-caribou-human food chain, radionuclides were analyzed in tissues from 18 barren-ground caribou (Rangifer tarandus groenlandicus). Radionuclides included uranium (U), radium (226Ra), lead (210Pb), and polonium (210Po) from the uranium decay series; the fission product (137Cs) from fallout; and naturally occurring potassium (40K). Natural background radiation doses average 2-4 mSv/year from cosmic rays, external gamma rays, radon inhalation, and ingestion of food items. The ingestion of 210Po and 137Cs when caribou are consumed adds to these background doses. The dose increment was 0.85 mSv/year for adults who consumed 100 g of caribou meat per day and up to 1.7 mSv/year if one liver and 10 kidneys per year were also consumed. We discuss the cancer risk from these doses. Concentration ratios (CRs), relating caribou tissues to lichens or rumen (stomach) contents, were calculated to estimate food chain transfer. The CRs for caribou muscle ranged from 1 to 16% for U, 6 to 25% for 226Ra, 1 to 2% for 210Pb, 6 to 26% for 210Po, 260 to 370% for 137Cs, and 76 to 130% for 40K, with 137Cs biomagnifying by a factor of 3-4. These CRs are useful in predicting caribou meat concentrations from the lichens, measured in monitoring programs, for the future evaluation of uranium mining impacts on this critical food chain.
OBJECTIVES: Familial cancer risks were studied in offspring whose parents had a similar (concordant) or a different (discordant) cancer in order to assess the modification of cancer risks from one generation to another. METHODS: We used the nation-wide Swedish Family-Cancer Database to calculate familial rate ratios (FRRs) to the offspring when their parents had concordant and discordant cancers. Cancer sites were included if there was at least one pair of parents with the same cancer. In situ cancers were included in a separate analysis in order to increase the numbers of cases. RESULTS: The risk of colon, all bowel, lung and breast cancer and melanoma increased 1.1-1.2 times when one parent and 1.3-1.6 times when two parents had any discordant cancer, suggesting involvement of environmental and hereditary effects shared by many forms of cancer. When both parents had colon cancer or melanoma, the respective risks in the offspring were 3.0 and 9.3 but only based on single triplets. For all bowel cancer the risk was 3.4, approximately multiplicative from the familial one parent-offspring risk. For concordant lung and breast cancer triplets the risk in offspring was 11.8 and 29.4, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Even discordant cancer in parents increased cancer risk in offspring. This may be due to environmental and hereditary causes, and deserves consideration in epidemiological studies. The high risks in families where both parents had the same cancer suggest interactions of hereditary and environmental factors.
BACKGROUND: Pertussis vaccination in infancy has been suggested to increase the risk for development of asthma and allergy. OBJECTIVE: To assess sensitization rates and development of atopic diseases in a prospective randomized controlled trial of pertussis vaccine. PATIENTS AND METHODS: A total of 669 children were randomized to 1 of 4 vaccine groups (2-component acellular pertussis, 5-component acellular pertussis, whole-cell pertussis vaccines, and placebo [diphtheria and tetanus toxoids]). Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids were also given to the children in the pertussis vaccine groups. The children were evaluated by means of questionnaires at age 2 months, 7 months, and 2 1/2 years; skin prick tests at age 7 months and 2 1/2 years; and blinded clinical investigation at age 2 1/2 years. The families were contacted at regular intervals to assess possible adverse effects after the vaccinations and symptoms of whooping cough. RESULTS: The cumulative incidence of atopic diseases was 30% and incidence rates were similar in the 4 groups after adjusting for family history. Exposure to environmental tobacco smoke and home dampness did not confound these results. The frequency of adverse effects did not differ appreciably between atopic and nonatopic children, with the exception that a nodule at the vaccination site was more frequent after whole-cell pertussis vaccination in the nonatopic children. Among 47 children with proven pertussis, atopic disease appeared in 19 (40%). Of these 47 children, 9 (19%) developed asthma, as compared with 58 (9%) noninfected children (P=.03). CONCLUSIONS: We found no support for a drastic increase in allergic manifestations after pertussis vaccination. There was a positive association between whooping cough and asthma by 2 1/2 years of age. There seems to be little reason to withhold pertussis vaccination from infants, irrespective of family history of allergy.
Lower respiratory disease (LRD) is a common cause of hospitalization in infants, and episodes of obstructive LRD increase the risk for asthma later in life. The purpose of this study was to assess time trends and geographical variation of first time hospitalization for LRD among children in Stockholm County, Sweden. Data on first time admittance for LRD among children aged up to 5 yrs from 1973 through 1992 were obtained from the Stockholm County Council hospital discharge register, and population register data were used for estimation of the population at risk. Municipal data were available for 1982-1992 on outbreaks of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infections and socio-economic factors. A total of 12,450 children had been hospitalized for the first time with LRD. For children aged
We assessed the effect of exposure to environmental tobacco smoke on the risk of developing bronchial obstruction in a 2-year cohort study of 3,754 children born in Oslo, Norway, during a period of 15 months in 1992-1993. We collected questionnaire information on the child's health and environmental exposures at birth and when the child was age 6 months (follow up rate = 95%), 12 months (92%), 18 months (92%), and 24 months (81%). The outcome of interest was defined as two or more episodes of bronchial obstruction or one obstruction lasting more than 1 month, and it was verified by a specialist group evaluating data from questionnaires, clinical examinations, and health records. The risk of bronchial obstruction was increased in children exposed to environmental tobacco smoke (cumulative incidence = 0.109) compared with unexposed children (0.071), with an adjusted odds ratio of 1.6 [95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.3-2.1]. The effect was seen for maternal smoking alone (odds ratio = 1.6; 95% CI = 1.0-2.6), paternal smoking alone (odds ratio = 1.5; 95% CI = 1.1-2.2), and both parents smoking (odds ratio = 1.5; 95% CI = 1.0-2.2). There was no clear exposure-response pattern. The findings indicate that exposure to environmental tobacco smoke such as is experienced in Norwegian housing increases the risk of developing bronchial obstruction during the first 2 years of life.
OBJECTIVE: To study the association of the daily frequency of registration of patients with acute asthma at the emergency department of a central hospital in the south-west of Sweden with levels of air pollution and meteorological observations. METHODS: A retrospective longitudinal study was made of asthma patients taken from a hospital registry. This information was correlated with measurements of ozone, nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide, toluene, temperature and relative humidity. Patients were from the catchment area of the Central Hospital of Halmstad containing around 120,000 inhabitants. A total of 4127 visits of patients with acute asthma to the emergency department at the Central Hospital of Halmstad were registered during a period of 1247 days from January 1990 to May 1993. The differential optical absorption spectroscopy (DOAS) technique was used to monitor levels of air pollutants over a distance of 1000 m in the central part of the town of Halmstad. Data on temperature, relative humidity, precipitation, wind speed and wind direction for the time period were supplied by the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI). RESULTS: There were many statistically significant correlations between the levels of air pollutants and the meteorological measurements and a strong negative correlation between ozone and nitrogen dioxide. There was a statistically significant effect on asthma visits in children of low temperature and high nitrogen dioxide levels, and on asthma visits in adults of high temperature and high levels of ozone. CONCLUSIONS: There was a different reaction pattern in children and adults with asthma regarding temperature and ozone/nitrogen dioxide. The strong correlations between temperature and air pollution and between the levels of ozone and nitrogen dioxide made the true relation between asthma, air pollution and temperature hard to evaluate statistically.
Although health statistics in Ukraine are difficult to obtain, there does appear to be an increase in the occurrence of asthma. Overall reporting of asthma is less frequent than in Western Europe, perhaps due to insufficient diagnostic capabilities at the present time. Asthma therapy in the Ukraine tends toward the use of theophylline and beta 2-agonists, rather than inhaled corticosteroids. Asthma morbidity differs in various regions of Ukraine, perhaps as a consequence of increased environmental exposure in some areas.
Impairments in the interferon status of children with chronic and recurring diseases of the respiratory organs were investigated and its correction was shown possible with the use of alpha 2-interferon (reaferon). Suppression of the interferon-producing capacity of the immunocytes was observed in all the cases of the disease aggravation. The level of the suppression correlated with the severity of the infection. In the patients affected by radiation the suppression of the interferonogenesis was more marked. However, in these cases no dependence of the detected impairments in the interferon status on the level of the radiation pollution of the territory of the children residence was shown. The inclusion of reaferon to the basal therapy resulted in a significant increase of the alpha-interferon production in the cases of bronchial asthma and asthmatic bronchitis as well as its recovery to the normal in the cases of recurring bronchitis and chronic pneumonia. In all the cases of bronchopulmonary diseases only a tendency towards normalization of the alpha-interferon indices was recorded.