Study reveals impact of air pollution on weak hearts
Posted: July 13, 2013
Posted in: Industrial Deafness and Disease Personal Injury
An international study has revealed the impact of air pollution on weak hearts — causing major damage, and in some cases, death. The British Heart Foundation, who funded the Lancet work, argues that the UK has to make serious changes in order to clean up the air. The levels of air pollution in many of the UK’s cities are above safe levels set by the European Union.
This is not only a problem in the UK, but worldwide
Despite major gains in lowering pollution throughout the European Union, some major metropolitan cities like London are currently suffering from some of the worst air quality they’ve ever seen. Air pollution has been recognised as one of the top 10 causes of mortality in the UK.
A study by the World Health Organization reported in National Geographic News states that air pollution in China is related to around 656,000 deaths every year throughout the country.
The same report by the World Health Organization states that an average of 2 million people are killed worldwide every year due to air pollution.
In India, almost half of all monitored cities have above-average or critical levels of particulate matter pollution below 10 micrometers.
The Lancet research investigated the data of patients in 12 countries, including the UK, the US and China. The research discovered a very strong link with gases such as carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide, as well as fine particulates in the air from traffic fumes that travel deep into the lungs, and therefore, into the bloodstream.
People with already quite weak hearts are particularly susceptible if they are exposed to high levels on a daily basis. It is believed that if air pollution was reduced, 8,000 hospital admissions a year for heart failure could be avoided in the US.
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