Monday, April 11, 2005

The ACS study of air pollution and mortality

The second major finding hit the press in 1995: an American Cancer Society study of half a million Americans in 151 cities. Detailed data on individuals was less than the Harvard 6 Cities study, but the breadth of data were overwhelming.

Paraphrased abstract:

The investigators linked ambient air pollution data from 151 U.S. metropolitan areas in 1980 with individual risk factor on 552,138 adults who resided in these areas when enrolled in a prospective study in 1982... Exposure to sulfate and fine particulate air pollution, which is primarily from fossil fuel combustion, was estimated from national data bases. Multivariate analysis controlled for smoking, education, and other risk factors. Increased mortality with increasing particulate air pollution was observed. Risk ratios of all-cause mortality for the most polluted areas compared with the least polluted equaled 1.15 and 1.17 when using sulfate and fine particulate measures respectively. Increased particulate air pollution was associated increased cardiopulmonary and lung cancer mortality but not with mortality due to other causes. Increased mortality is associated with sulfate and fine particulate air pollution at levels commonly found in U.S. cities. The increase in risk is not attributable to tobacco smoking...

Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 1995 Mar;151(3 Pt 1):669-74.

Particulate air pollution as a predictor of mortality in a prospective study of U.S. adults.

Pope CA 3rd, Thun MJ, Namboodiri MM, Dockery DW, Evans JS, Speizer FE, Heath CW Jr.Department of Environmental Health, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts.

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