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J Environ Manage. 2016 Jul 15;177:1-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2016.03.051. Epub 2016 Apr 8.

The modifying effect of socioeconomic status on the relationship between traffic, air pollution and respiratory health in elementary schoolchildren.

Author information

1
Population Studies Division, Environmental Health Science & Research Bureau, Health Canada, 50 Columbine Driveway, Ottawa, ON K1A 0K9, Canada. Electronic address: sabit.cakmak@canada.ca.
2
Population Studies Division, Environmental Health Science & Research Bureau, Health Canada, 50 Columbine Driveway, Ottawa, ON K1A 0K9, Canada.
3
Biomedical Sciences, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON K1N 6N5, Canada.
4
Department of Geosciences, Texas Tech University, Box 41053, Lubbock, TX 79409-1053, USA.

Abstract

The volume and type of traffic and exposure to air pollution have been found to be associated with respiratory health, but few studies have considered the interaction with socioeconomic status at the household level. We investigated the relationships of respiratory health related to traffic type, traffic volume, and air pollution, stratifying by socioeconomic status, based on household income and education, in 3591 schoolchildren in Windsor, Canada. Interquartile range changes in traffic exposure and pollutant levels were linked to respiratory symptoms and objective measures of lung function using generalised linear models for three levels of income and education. In 95% of the relationships among all cases, the odds ratios for reported respiratory symptoms (a decrease in measured lung function), based on an interquartile range change in traffic exposure or pollutant, were greater in the lower income/education groups than the higher, although the odds ratios were in most cases not significant. However, in up to 62% of the cases, the differences between high and low socioeconomic groups were statistically significant, thus indicating socioeconomic status (SES) as a significant effect modifier. Our findings indicate that children from lower socioeconomic households have a higher risk of specific respiratory health problems (chest congestion, wheezing) due to traffic volume and air pollution exposure.

KEYWORDS:

Air pollution; Children; Effect modifier; Epidemiologic; Lung function; Respiratory health; Socioeconomics; Traffic

PMID:
27064731
DOI:
10.1016/j.jenvman.2016.03.051
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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