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Respir Med. 2008 May;102(5):733-7. doi: 10.1016/j.rmed.2007.12.010. Epub 2008 Jan 31.

Effect of meteorological variables on the incidence of respiratory tract infections.

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Alfa Institute of Biomedical Sciences (AIBS), Athens, Greece.



The possible effect of the various meteorological variables on the incidence of upper and lower respiratory tract infections (RTIs) has intrigued the scientific community for decades.


We performed a retrospective analysis regarding the association between meteorological variables and clinical data for upper and lower RTIs in the area of Attica, Greece.


There was a statistically significant (P<0.001) negative correlation between weekly average temperature with the proportion of weekly house call visits resulting in a diagnosis of upper or lower RTIs 4 days later (R=-0.56 and -0.71 for upper and lower RTIs, respectively) as well as 7 days later (R=-0.57 and -0.71 for upper and lower RTIs, respectively) and during the same day (R=-0.55 and -0.68 for upper and lower RTIs, respectively). In addition, there was a negative correlation between weekly wind chill average (and minimum) temperature as well as a positive correlation of relative humidity with upper and lower RTIs. In contrast, there was no significant correlation between wind speed and upper or lower RTIs.


The findings suggest that house call visits due to upper and lower RTIs increased as the average temperature in the area of Attica decreased.

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