By R.E. Hester, R.M. Harrison
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Extra resources for AIR POLLUTION & HEALTH
Brittle (very severe) asthmatics or those who contract cancer as a result of exposure to very low concentrations of environmental chemicals, may suffer serious personal consequences even when concentrations are within air quality guidelines.
Zeger, Am. Rev. Respir. , 1990, 141, 62. B. Ostro, M. Lipsett, J. , Am. J. Respir. Crit. , 1994, 149, A658. D. V. Bates and R. Sizto, Environ. , 1987, 43, 317. J. D. Poloniecki, R. W. Atkinson, A. , Occup. Environ. , 1997, 54, 535. 19 job:LAY01 21-9-1998 page:20 colour:1 black–text J. G. 4% for all cause, cardiovascular and respiratory mortality, respectively. These findings were independent of the effects of other pollutants but might appear to be difficult to square with the lack of effect seen for hospital admissions.
COPD is essentially a disease of cigarette smokers and although, like asthma, it is also an inflammatory condition, on a day-to-day basis these patients show no marked changes in lung function. Patients with either COPD or asthma develop symptoms because of the airway narrowing resulting from the inflammatory process. Where the baseline airway diameter is small, only minor reductions in diameter can produce marked reductions in airflow and hence symptoms. 2 job:LAY01 21-9-1998 page:3 colour:1 black–text Health Effects of Gaseous Air Pollutants However, it is at least intuitively logical that, for respiratory diseases, inhalation of polluted air can lead to a deterioration in symptoms.