Exposure to high levels of air pollution from factories and vehicles has been linked to worse outcomes for patients with lung disease, according to a new study.
The study, published in the journal Thorax, looked at data on nearly 1,500 adults with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) who were living in London. The participants were followed for an average of six years.
Overall, the study found that exposure to higher levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and particulate matter (PM) was linked to a greater decline in lung function, as well as an increased risk of death.
“Our findings add to the growing body of evidence linking air pollution to worse health outcomes in people with lung disease,” said study author Dr. Anja Geilen, of the Imperial College London.
“Given the high levels of air pollution exposure in many urban areas around the world, it is important that we continue to monitor the health effects of this exposure, and work to reduce levels of air pollution.”
Air pollution from factories and vehicles has been linked to worse health outcomes for patients with lung disease, according to a new study.
The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, looked at data from more than 4,000 patients with COPD, a chronic lung disease that includes bronchitis and emphysema.
The patients were living in areas with high levels of air pollution, and the researchers found that those who were exposed to the most pollution had a greater decline in lung function over time, and were more likely to die from their disease, compared to those who were exposed to less pollution.
The study’s lead author, Dr. Howard Friedman, said that the findings add to the growing body of evidence linking air pollution to adverse health effects, and that they suggest that air pollution may be a major contributor to the burden of lung disease.
While the study did not prove cause and effect, Dr. Friedman said that the findings support the need for action to reduce air pollution, in order to protect the health of those with lung disease.