Individuals with Common Heart Disorders are at Higher Risk of Stroke, If Exposed to High Level of Pollution, Study Suggests

Jan, 2021 - By SMI

Individuals with Common Heart Disorders are at Higher Risk of Stroke, If Exposed to High Level of Pollution, Study Suggests

According to a new study piloted by the researchers of UPMC Heart and Vascular Institute and University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine have suggested that individuals with common heart rhythm disorders are at 1.2-fold higher risk of stroke if exposed to high levels of pollution, in comparison to individuals with common heart disorders but living with less pollution.

Jared W. Magnani, Associate Professor of Medicine at Pitt stated, “We measured pollution exposure at people's doorsteps by using geocoding and then determined their annual exposure to particulate matter. This approach and the sample size make our study particularly powerful. We can use this information to guide our patients by advising them to limit exposure to pollution.”

In this study, researchers considered over 31,000 people with atrial fibrillation (AFib) living in Allegheny County since 2007. Moreover, researchers evaluated the exact levels of fine particulate pollution inhaled by participants on a daily basis, by utilizing suitcase-sized air pollution monitors that were mounted on telephone poles, the team. In addition, according to the American Lung Association, the Pittsburgh region is one of the 10 most polluted in the U.S.

Later, researchers observed that risk of stroke gradually increased with daily exposure to air pollution. Researchers also noted that fine particulate pollution are minute, which easily gets into the bodies through lungs and then into blood stream, thereby eliciting various heart events. Furthermore, researchers also examined the influence of pollution on different demographic and socioeconomic groups and found that blacks were exposed to fine particulate by 1.5-fold higher in comparison to whites, and 1.3-fold higher in individuals living below poverty line compared to individuals above poverty line.

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