Ambient Air Pollution Associated with Chronic Respiratory Disease

A recent study from the US finds a strong association between ambient air pollution and increased rates of emphysema, chronic respiratory disease.Ambient Air Pollution Associated with Chronic Respiratory Disease

A team of researchers, led by Joel D. Kaufman, MD, MPH, of the School of Public Health at University of Washington, and R. Graham Barr, MD, DrPH, of the Department of Medicine at Columbia University Medical Center, used data from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) which included patients aged 45 to 84 years from 6 metropolitan areas in the US.

Researchers found that median percent emphysema was 3% at the beginning of the study, then increased a mean 0.58 percentage points per 10 years. Mean ambient concentrations of PM2.5 and NOdecreased substantially during the follow-up period. Concentrations of each of the observed ambient pollutant estimates were associated with increases in percent emphysema per 10 years.

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