Exposure to Air Pollution Can Lead to Stroke! #pollution #stroke #cardiovascular #airpollution


Recently, British researchers linked the air pollution with irregular heartbeat and lung blood cloths.These data coming from England and Wales presented association between heart attacks, hospitalisation, deaths and air pollution levels. Weeks later German scientists reported that fine particulate matter and noise increase risk of stroke and other cardiovascular diseases.  No doubt that inhabitants of urban areas are faced with more health problems than thought from beginning.


Strong efforts towards improvement of air quality in urban areas as well as modernisation of polluting technologies lead to decreased amount of airborne dangerous particles. Apparently, nowadays the concentration of air pollution is 75% lower than the one from ´70s. Nevertheless, even the lowest levels of chemicals when present in the environment for a longer period of time can create a major health risk. The results from the German Heinz Nixdorf Recall (HNR) study indicated that particles size-characterised as PM10 and PM2.5, are directly linked with occurrence of stroke.

Air is a garbage bin for various chemicals and particulate matters, so it is not surprising that even other pollutants can worsen the health impact, just as for example the soot content of the particulate dust. Soot is affiliated with increased risk for stroke and coronary events. Although the PM2.5 and PM10 problem is adressed by EU the soot is currently not legally regulated. The air content in the urban areas is a waste bin for various pollutants. Therefore, there are possibly many other health effects to be discovered… but now one is clear. Even the low levels of dangerous particles can be health threatening.

Full bibliographic information
Air Quality, Stroke, and Coronary Event; Hoffmann B, Weinmayr G, Hennig F, Fuks K, Moebus S, Weimar C, Dragano N, Hermann DM, Kälsch H, Mahabadi AA, Erbel R, Jöckel KH: Dtsch Arztebl Int 2015; 112(12): 195-201; DOI: 10.3238/arztebl.2015.0195
Short-term effects of air pollution on a range of cardiovascular events in England and Wales: case-crossover analysis of the MINAP database, hospital admission an mortality; Ai MilojevicPaul WilkinsonBen ArmstrongKrishnan BhaskaranLiam SmeethShakoor Hajat; Heart doi:10.1136/heartjnl-2013-304963