Wednesday, January 16, 2013

How Do Tobacco Smoke and Air Pollution Affect Asthma in Young Children?

Wreaths of tobacco smoke.
Wreaths of tobacco smoke. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Air pollution, fetal and infant tobacco smoke exposure, and wheezing in preschool children: a population-based prospective birth cohort(23 page pdf, Agnes MM Sonnenschein-van der Voort ,Yvonne de Kluizenaar, Vincent WV Jaddoe, Carmelo Gabriele Hein Raat, HenriĆ«tte A Moll, Albert Hofman, Frank H Pierik, Henk ME Miedema, Johan C de Jongste, Liesbeth Duijts, Environmental Health, Dec. 11, 2012) 

The key conclusion drawn by the study under review today is that early exposure to tobacco smoke makes the lungs of children more vulnerable to air pollution. Also short term exposure to air pollutants alone could affect development of respiratory while long term exposure has greater impact when combined with tobacco smoke  

Key Quotes: 

 “Higher exposure levels to air pollutants have been associated with increased risks of asthma exacerbations in adults and children aged older than 5 years” 

“We examined the associations of exposure to ambient particulate matter (PM10) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) with the risk of wheezing in preschool children, and assessed whether these associations were modified by tobacco smoke exposure.” 

“Our results suggest that short term exposure to air pollutants might be important for developing respiratory symptoms, whereas long term exposure to air pollutants might be important in the presence of tobacco smoke exposure.”

 “Our study suggests that long term exposure to higher levels of traffic-related air pollutants PM10 and NO2 are associated with increased risks of wheezing in the first 3 years of life among children who are exposed to tobacco smoke during fetal and infant life.”
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