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Am Rev Respir Dis. 1986 May;133(5):834-42.

Effects of ambient sulfur oxides and suspended particles on respiratory health of preadolescent children.


Reported here are the results from an ongoing study of outdoor air pollution and respiratory health of children living in six cities in the eastern and midwestern United States. The study enrolled 10,106 white preadolescent children between 1974 and 1977 in 3 successive annual visits to each city. Each child received a spirometric examination, and a parent completed a standard questionnaire. Of this cohort, 8,380 children were seen for a second examination 1 yr later. An air pollution monitoring program was begun in each community at about the time of the first examination. For this report, measurements of total suspended particulates (TSP), the sulfate fraction of TSP (TSO4), and sulfur dioxide (SO2) concentrations at study-affiliated outdoor stations were combined with measurements at other public and private monitoring sites to create a record of TSP, TSO4, and SO2 concentrations in each of 9 air pollution regions during the 1-yr period preceding each examination and, for TSP, during each child's lifetime up to the time of testing. Across the 6 cities, frequency of cough was significantly associated with the average of 24-h mean concentrations of all 3 air pollutants during the year preceding the health examination (p less than 0.01). Rates of bronchitis and a composite measure of lower respiratory illness were significantly associated with average particulate concentrations (p less than 0.05). In analyses restricted to lifetime residents, these outcomes were significantly associated with measures of lifetime mean TSP concentration. Within the cities, however, temporal and spatial variation in air pollutant concentrations and illness and symptom rates were not positively associated.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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