Also quoted here: Smoggy Days May Raise Your Odds for Burst Appendix(Health Day, July 11, 2013)
Today we review research conducted from data in a dozen Canadian cities that showed a significant link between short term increases in ground level ozone and the occurrence of perforated appendices – a concern especially for seniors living in urban areas with growing traffic air pollution. The risk increases by 22% for an increase of 16 ppb of ozone over the previous week. The authors caution that ozone may not be the cause but rather a marker.
Inflamed appendix removal by open surgery (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
“the investigators tracked rates of emergency care for appendicitis involving nearly 36,000 patients treated in 12 Canadian cities between 2004 and 2008.”
"short-term exposure to ambient ozone [in air] was associated with an increased number of hospital visits for appendicitis….the risk for perforated (burst) appendix rose by up to 22 percent with every 16 parts-per-billion rise of ozone in the air over the three to seven days prior to the appendicitis incident”
“The lifetime risk of appendicitis is approximately 1 in 15, and appendectomy for appendicitis is
amongst the most frequently performed operations in developed nations…..In the United States, appendicitis-related hospitalizations contribute to approximately $3 billion in hospital charges annually”