Monday, May 20, 2013

Particulate Pollution Near Traffic and Hardening of the Arteries

Fine Particulate Air Pollution and the Progression of Carotid Intima-Medial Thickness: A Prospective Cohort Study from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis and Air Pollution(9 page pdf, Sara D. Adar mail, Lianne Sheppard, Sverre Vedal, Joseph F. Polak, Paul D. Sampson, Ana V. Diez Roux, Matthew Budoff, David R. Jacobs Jr, R. Graham Barr, Karol Watson, Joel D. Kaufman, PLoS Med, Apr. 23, 2013)
Also discussed here: Air Pollution and Hardening of Arteries(Science Daily, Apr. 23, 2013)

Today we review a paper that looks at the impact of PM2.5 levels in several cities across the USA on heart disease. Higher concentrations of PM often found during exposure to vehicle emissions near heavy traffic were found to have a significant link to atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries and give rise to a 2% greater risk of a heart attack for those who live in these areas.arteries  
Key Quotes:

“higher concentrations of fine particulate air pollution (PM2.5) were linked to a faster thickening of the inner two layers of the common carotid artery, an important blood vessel that provides blood to the head, neck, and brain.”

"Our findings help us to understand how it is that exposures to air pollution may cause the increases in heart attacks and strokes observed by other studies,"

 “The researchers were able to link air pollution levels estimated at each person's house with two ultrasound measurements of the blood vessels, separated by about three years”

 "Linking these findings with other results from the same population suggests that persons living in a more polluted part of town may have a 2 percent higher risk of stroke as compared to people in a less polluted part of the same metropolitan area,"
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