Indoor climate of two new blocks of flats was investigated. The case building was built for people with respiratory diseases by following the instructions of the Finnish Classification of Indoor Climate, Construction and Finishing Materials, while the control building was built using conventional building technology. The main indoor air parameters (temperature, relative humidity and levels of CO, CO2, ammonia, total volatile organic compounds, total suspended particles, fungal spores, bacteria and cat, dog and house dust mite allergens) were measured in six apartments of both the buildings on five occasions during the 3-year occupancy. In addition, a questionnaire to evaluate symptoms of the occupants and their satisfaction with their home environment was conducted in connection with indoor air quality (IAQ) measurements. The levels of indoor air pollutants in the case building were, in general, lower than those in the control building. In addition, the asthmatic occupants informed that their symptoms had decreased during the occupancy in the case building. This case study showed that high IAQ is possible to reach by careful design, proper materials and equipment and on high-quality construction with reasonable additional costs. In addition, the study indicated that good IAQ can also be maintained during the occupancy, if sufficient information on factors affecting IAQ and guidance on proper use and care of equipment are available for occupants.
The concentration-response relationship between daily ambient inhalable particle (particulate matter less than or equal to 10 micro m; PM(10)) concentrations and daily mortality typically shows no evidence of a threshold concentration below which no relationship is observed. However, the power to assess a relationship at very low concentrations of PM(10) has been limited in studies to date. The concentrations of PM(10) and other air pollutants in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, from January 1994 through December 1996 were very low: the 50th and 90th percentiles of daily average PM(10) concentrations were 13 and 23 micro g/m(3), respectively, and 27 and 39 ppb, respectively, for 1-hr maximum ozone. Analyses of 3 years of daily pollution (PM(10), ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, and carbon monoxide) concentrations and mortality counts showed that the dominant associations were between ozone and total mortality and respiratory and cardiovascular mortality in the summer, and between nitrogen dioxide and total mortality in the winter, although some association with PM(10) may also have been present. We conclude that increases in low concentrations of air pollution are associated with increased daily mortality. These findings may support the notion that no threshold pollutant concentrations are present, but they also raise concern that these effects may not be effects of the measured pollutants themselves, but rather of some other factor(s) present in the air pollution-meteorology mix.
Cites: J Air Waste Manag Assoc. 2000 Jul;50(7):1184-9810939211
Cites: Am J Epidemiol. 2000 Sep 1;152(5):397-40610981451
Cites: J Air Waste Manag Assoc. 2000 Aug;50(8):1481-50011002609
We examined the associations between emergency department (ED) visits for ischemic heart disease (IHD) and short-term elevations in ambient air pollutants (CO and NO(2)).
A hierarchical clusters design was used to study ED visits (n = 4979) for ischemic heart disease (ICD-9: 410-414) that occurred at a Montreal hospital between 1997 and 2002. The generalized linear mixed models technique was applied to create Poisson models for the clustered counts of ED visits for IHD. The analysis was done by gender for two age categories, all patients and patients aged over 64 years.
The results are presented as an excess risk increase associated with the interquartile range (IQR) of daily average of the pollutant concentration. The results for NO(2) (IQR = 9.5 ppb) were 5.9% (95% CI: 2.1-9.9) for all patients and 6.2% (95% CI: 1.2-11.4) for males; for patients aged over 64: 7.1% (95% CI: 2.5-11.9) for all patients, 9.1% (95% CI: 2.8-15.7) for males, and 6.5% (95% CI: 0.7-12.7) for females (for exposure lagged by 1-day). The results for CO (IQR = 0.2 ppm): 5.4% (95% CI: 2.3-8.5) for all patients, and 7.5% (95% CI: 3.6-11.6) for males. For patients aged over 64 years, 4.9% (95% CI: 1.3-8.7) for all patients, and 7.5% (95% CI: 2.6-12.6) for males. The results show the associations for the same day exposures.
The short-term effects of nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide are associated significantly with daily ED visits for ischemic heart disease. For NO(2) the associations are stronger for patients aged over 64 years. As indicated by our results, it is likely that vehicular traffic, a producer of NO(2) and CO, contributes to an increased number of ED visits for IHD.
Otitis media (OM) is one of the most common early childhood infections, resulting in an enormous economic burden to the health care system through unscheduled doctor visits and antibiotic prescriptions.
The objective of this study was to investigate the potential association between ambient air pollution exposure and emergency department (ED) visits for OM.
Ten years of ED data were obtained from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and linked to levels of air pollution: carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), ozone (O3), sulfur dioxide, and particulate matter (PM) of median aerometric diameter
Cites: An Pediatr (Barc). 2004 Feb;60(2):133-814757016
Cites: Vaccine. 2008 Dec 23;26 Suppl 7:G5-1019094935
Days of high ambient carbon dioxide (CO) have been associated with increased hospital admissions for cardiac disease. This study was conducted to determine if daily concentrations of CO and fine particulates (PM2.5) are associated with daily changes in heart rate variability.
Each of 36 adults with coronary artery disease had personal exposure to PM2.5 and CO measured along with heart rate variability for one 24-hour period each week for up to 10 weeks.
Among those not taking beta-receptor blockers, there was a positive association between the standard deviation of the R-to-R intervals and CO (P = 0.02). No effect was found for PM2.5.
Urban exposure to CO may exert a biologic effect on the heart, which may be modified by medications.
Super slim cigarettes are a relatively new type of cigarette in Canada, and an analysis of select toxicants in the mainstream smoke emissions of the super slim cigarette was conducted.
The yields of selected toxicants in the mainstream smoke emissions of six brands of super slim cigarettes were compared with the Canadian Benchmark, which represents the cigarette designs most commonly found in Canada. A super slim cigarette was also compared with a 'Reference Cigarette' to study the impact of the significantly reduced circumference on mainstream smoke emissions.
Compared with the Canadian Benchmark, the yields of carbon monoxide, the carbonyls, volatiles and the aromatic amines were significantly lower for the super slim cigarette, but the yields of formaldehyde and ammonia were significantly higher. For brands containing a mixed tobacco blend, the yields of tobacco-specific nitrosamines were increased significantly. The reduced circumference of the super slim cigarette resulted in a lower tobacco weight, which together with filter ventilation resulted in lower yields of many toxicants. However, the reduced circumference increased significantly the yields of formaldehyde and phenols in mainstream smoke emissions.
The notably slimmer design of the super slim cigarette resulted in lower yields of some toxicants in the mainstream smoke emissions. However, there were also significant increases in some toxicant levels in the mainstream smoke emissions including formaldehyde, ammonia and the phenols. There are no changes in emission levels that have been shown to reduce exposure or risk in a way that is meaningful, and therefore, the super slim cigarette should not be considered a 'less harmful' cigarette.
The incidence of acute respiratory diseases (ARD) in two districts of the Orenburg Region which have different levels of environmental pollution was comparatively analyzed. The higher incidence of ARD in the more polluted district (Kuvandyksky) than in the control one (Belyaevsky). The incidence rate (41.8%) of ARD correlated with the level of the ambient air pollution by dust, CO, NO2, NF and fluoride aerosols in the Kuvandyksky district.
Temperature, a key climate change indicator, is expected to increase substantially in the Northern Hemisphere, with potentially grave implications for human health. This study is the first to investigate the association between the daily 3-hour maximum apparent temperature (Tapp(max)), and respiratory, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular mortality in Copenhagen (1999-2006) using a case-crossover design. Susceptibility was investigated for age, sex, socio-economic status and place of death. For an inter-quartile range (7 °C) increase in Tapp(max), an inverse association was found with cardiovascular mortality (-7% 95% CI -13%; -1%) and none with respiratory and cerebrovascular mortality. In the cold period all associations were inverse, although insignificant.
Cites: Epidemiology. 2008 Sep;19(5):711-918520615
Cites: Scand J Public Health. 2008 Jul;36(5):516-2318567653
Cites: J Occup Environ Med. 2009 Jan;51(1):13-2519136869
Cites: Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2009 Mar 1;179(5):383-919060232
Sixteen existing multi-family buildings (94 apartments) in Finland and 20 (96 apartments) in Lithuania were investigated prior to their renovation in order to develop and test out a common protocol for the indoor environmental quality (IEQ) assessment, and to assess the potential for improving IEQ along with energy efficiency. Baseline data on buildings, as well as data on temperature (T), relative humidity (RH), carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), particulate matter (PM), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), formaldehyde, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), radon, and microbial content in settled dust were collected from each apartment. In addition, questionnaire data regarding housing quality and health were collected from the occupants. The results indicated that most measured IEQ parameters were within recommended limits. However, different baselines in each country were observed especially for parameters related to thermal conditions and ventilation. Different baselines were also observed for the respondents' satisfaction with their residence and indoor air quality, as well as their behavior related to indoor environment. In this paper, we present some evidence for the potential in improving IEQ along with energy efficiency in the current building stock, followed by discussion of possible IEQ indicators and development of the assessment protocol.
Self-reported data on the municipality of residence were used to assess long-term exposure to outdoor air pollution from 1980 to 2002 in the longitudinal Canadian National Population Health Survey. Exposure to carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, sulfur dioxide, and particulate matter was determined using data obtained from fixed-site air pollution monitors operated principally in urban areas. Four different methods of attributing pollution exposure were used based on residence in (1) 1980, (2) 1994, (3) 1980 and 1994, and (4) at all locations between 1980 and 2002. Between 1,693 and 4,274 of 10,515 members of the cohort could be assigned exposures to individual pollutants using these methods. On average, subjects spent 71.4% of the 1980-2002 period in the census subdivision where they lived in 1980. A single exposure measure in 1980 or 1994 or a mean of the two measures was highly correlated (r>0.7, P