Daily symptom rates in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and in other subjects with presumed high sensitivity to air pollution who lived near a coal-fired plant were compared with 24-hr ambient air concentrations of nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, soot, and suspended particles as well as with emissions from the plant. The mean concentrations of each of the pollutants during the 4-month study period were below 30 micrograms/m3, and no single 24-hr concentration exceeded 100 micrograms/m3. There were no consistent associations between plant emissions and pollutant levels or between these two variables and daily symptom rates. The results indicate that the coal-fired plant was not of major importance for the occurrence of acute respiratory symptoms in the surrounding population.
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.
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It has been suggested that children that are exposed to a stressful environment at home have an increased susceptibility for air pollution-related asthma. The aim here was to investigate the association between air pollution exposure and asthma, and effect modification by mental health and by socio-economic status (as markers of a stressful environment). All individuals under 18 years of age in four Swedish counties during 2007 to 2010 (1.2 million people) were included. The outcome was defined as dispensing at least two asthma medications during follow up. We linked data on NO2 from an empirical land use regression to data from national registers on outcome and potential confounders. Data was analyzed with logistic regression. There was an odds ratio (OR) of 1.02 (95% Confidence Interval (CI: 1.01-1.03) for asthma associated with a 10 µg·m-3 increase in NO2. The association only seemed to be present in areas where NO2 was higher than 15 µg·m-3 with an OR of 1.09 (95% CI: 1.07-1.12), and the association seemed stronger in children with parents with a high education, OR = 1.05 (95% CI: 1.02-1.09) and OR = 1.04 (95% CI: 1.01-1.07) in children to mothers and father with a high education, respectively. The association did not seem to depend on medication history of psychiatric disorders. There was weak evidence for the association between air pollution and asthma to be stronger in neighborhoods with higher education levels. In conclusion, air pollution was associated with dispensed asthma medications, especially in areas with comparatively higher levels of air pollution, and in children to parents with high education. We did not observe support for our hypothesis that stressors linked to socio-economy or mental health problems would increase susceptibility to the effects of air pollution on the development of asthma.
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
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Cites: Vaccine. 2008 Dec 23;26 Suppl 7:G5-1019094935
Health impacts of poor environmental quality have been identified in studies around the world and in Canada. While many of the studies have identified associations between air pollution and mortality or morbidity, few have focused on the role of health care as a potential moderator of impacts. This study assessed the determinants of health care access and utilization in the context of ambient air pollution in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada.
Residents of Sarnia participated in a Community Health Study administered by phone, while several ambient air pollutants including nitrogen dioxide (NO2), sulphur dioxide (SO2) and the volatile organic compounds benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, mp- and o-xylene (BTEX) were monitored across the city. Land Use Regression models were used to estimate individual exposures to the measured pollutants and logistic regression models were utilized to assess the relative influence of environmental, socioeconomic and health related covariates on general practitioner access and utilization outcomes.
The results show that general practitioner use increased with levels of exposure to nitrogen dioxide (NO2- Odds Ratio [OR]: 1.16, p 0.05).
This study provides evidence for inequitable health care access and utilization in Sarnia, with particular relevance to its situation as a sentinel high exposure environment. Levels of exposure to pollution appears to influence utilization of health care services, but poor access to primary health care services additionally burden certain groups in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada.
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Previous analyses of continuously measured compounds in Fort McKay, an indigenous community in the Athabasca Oil Sands, have detected increasing concentrations of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and total hydrocarbons (THC), but not of sulfur dioxide (SO2), ozone (O3), total reduced sulfur compounds (TRS), or particulate matter (aerodynamic diameter
The aims of the study were to evaluate if the front-door concentrations of benzene, toluene, and xylenes can be used to classify the personal exposures of Danish children and to identify factors that affect their personal exposure. Average concentrations were measured over 1 week with diffusive samplers, and the personal exposures of 98 children and the concentrations outside the front doors of their homes were measured simultaneously. Time and activity patterns were noted in diaries. The front-door concentrations were significantly higher in Copenhagen than in rural areas (all P
Environmental factors may play a role in the development of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). We examined whether long-term exposures to air pollution were associated with the risk of RA in the Swedish Epidemiological Investigation of Rheumatoid Arthritis Study.
We studied 1497 incident RA cases and 2536 controls. Local levels of particulate matter (PM10) and gaseous pollutants (sulphur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2)) from traffic and home heating were predicted for all residential addresses. We examined the association of an IQR increase (2 µg/m3 for PM10, 8 µg/m3 for SO2 and 9 µg/m3 for NO2) in each pollutant at different time points before symptom onset and average exposure with the risk of all RA and the risk of the rheumatoid factor and anti-citrullinated protein antibody (ACPA) RA phenotypes.
There was no evidence of an increased risk of RA with PM10. Total RA risks were modestly elevated for the gaseous pollutants, but were not statistically significant after adjustment for smoking and education (OR 1.18, 95% CI 0.97 to 1.43 and OR 1.09, 95% CI 0.99 to 1.19 for SO2 and NO2 in the 10th year before onset). Stronger elevated risks were observed for individuals with less than a university education and with the ACPA-negative RA phenotype.
No consistent overall associations between air pollution in the Stockholm area and the risk of RA were observed. However, there was a suggestion of increased risks of RA incidence with increases in NO2 from local traffic and SO2 from home heating sources with stronger associations for the ACPA-negative phenotype.
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BACKGROUND: There is limited evidence for the role of air pollution in the development and triggering of wheezing symptoms in young children. A study was undertaken to examine the effect of exposure to air pollution on wheezing symptoms in children under the age of 3 years with genetic susceptibility to asthma. METHODS: Daily recordings of symptoms were obtained for 205 children participating in the birth cohort study Copenhagen Prospective Study on Asthma in Children and living in Copenhagen for the first 3 years of life. Daily air pollution levels for particulate matter