|Range Rover, Honda Civic, Toyota Rav4 and VW Golf over Carlos Lazo Avenue, Santa Fe, Mexico City. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Traffic-related air pollution exposures and changes in heart rate variability in Mexico City: A panel study (26 page pdf, Kyra Naumoff Shields, Jennifer M Cavallari, Megan J Hunt, Mariana Lazo, Mario Molina, Luisa Molina and Fernando Holguin, Environmental Health, Jan. 18, 2013)
Today we review an article that looked at the impact of exposure to traffic emissions over several hours on heart rate variability. Results indicate that traffic can cause acute changes in HRV which in turn has an impact on heart disease and premature death, especially for older people.
“we examined associations between personal exposures to traffic-related air pollutants in Mexico City and changes in heart rate variability (HRV)”
“Short-term PM exposures have been linked to acute cardiovascular events including increased odds of having a myocardial infarction, cardiac arrhythmia, and venous thrombosis, while long-term exposure to PM has been associated with increased risk and progression of atherosclerosis”
"higher PM concentrations have been associated with decreased HRV in elderly populations and in patients with current or underlying cardiovascular disease”
“Short-term exposure to traffic-related emissions was associated with significant acute changes in HRV in this panel study”
“While having a reduced HRV is a risk factor for increased cardiovascular mortality; it is yet to be shown whether short-term environmental exposures associated with acute HRV changes can lead to cardiac arrhythmias in humans.”