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Cephalalgia. 2015 Oct;35(12):1085-91. doi: 10.1177/0333102415570300. Epub 2015 Feb 4.

Ambient air pollution, weather and daily emergency department visits for headache.

Author information

1
Public Health Department, Faculty for Health Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel Clinical Research Center, Soroka University Medical Center, Israel alina.vodonos@gmail.com Vodonos@bgu.ac.il.
2
Clinical Research Center, Soroka University Medical Center, Israel.
3
Neurology Department, Soroka University Medical Center, Israel.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Headache is a common condition, and a common complaint leading patients to emergency departments (ED). There have been a number of studies of the effect of environmental factors on headache, such as weather and air pollutants.

METHODS:

This retrospective cohort study included data on daily ED visits with a chief complaint of headache in Soroka University Medical Center (SUMC) during 2002-2012. Data on weather and air pollutants were obtained from monitor station in Be'er-Sheva. To estimate the short-term effects of air pollution and temperature on number of daily headache ED visits, we applied generalized linear mixed models (GLMM).

RESULTS:

A total of 22,021 ED visits were included in the analysis. An increase in 5℃ in temperature was associated with an increase in ED visits, relative risk (RR) = 1.042, (95% CI 1.009; 1.076). RR for headache was associated with an increase in 10 units of nitrogen dioxide (NO2), RR = 1.110 (95% CI 1.057; 1.167), with a higher effect for older patients.

DISCUSSION:

The current findings give evidence of an association between air pollution, weather and ED visits for headache, especially for NO2. Short-term increases in air pollution exposure may trigger headache by increasing pulmonary and systemic inflammation, increasing blood coagulability or altering endothelial function.

KEYWORDS:

Dust exposure; air pollution; emergency department visit; headache

PMID:
25653308
DOI:
10.1177/0333102415570300
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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