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Am J Epidemiol. 2001 Mar 1;153(5):444-52.

Association between ozone and hospitalization for acute respiratory diseases in children less than 2 years of age.

Author information

  • 1Environmental Health Directorate, Health Canada, 200 Environmental Health Center, Tunney's Pasture, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1A OL2. rick_burnett@hc-sc.gc.ca


To clarify the health effects of ozone exposure in young children, the authors studied the association between air pollution and hospital admissions for acute respiratory problems in children less than 2 years of age during the 15-year period from 1980 to 1994 in Toronto, Canada. The daily time series of admissions was adjusted for the influences of day of the week, season, and weather. A 35% (95% confidence interval: 19%, 52%) increase in the daily hospitalization rate for respiratory problems was associated with a 5-day moving average of the daily 1-hour maximum ozone concentration of 45 parts per billion, the May-August average value. The ozone effect persisted after adjustment for other ambient air pollutants or weather variables. Ozone was not associated with hospital admissions during the September-April period. Ambient ozone levels in the summertime should be considered a risk factor for respiratory problems in children less than 2 years of age.

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