Daily variations in air pollution and respiratory health in a multicentre study: the PEACE project.

W. Roemer, G. Hoek, B. Brunekreef, J. Haluszka, A. Kalandidi, J. Pekkanen

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    Abstract

    The Pollution Effects on Asthmatic Children in Europe (PEACE) study is a multicentre study of the acute effects of particles with a 50% cut-off aerodynamic diameter of 10 μm (PM10), black smoke (BS), sulphur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) on the respiratory health of children with chronic respiratory symptoms. The study was conducted in the winter of 1993/1994 by 14 research centres in Europe. A total of 2,010 children, divided over 28 panels in urban and suburban locations, was followed for at least 2 months. Exposure to air pollution was monitored on a daily basis. Health status was monitored by daily peak expiratory flow (PEF) measurements and a symptom diary. The association between respiratory health and air pollution levels was calculated with time series analysis. Combined effect estimates of air pollution on PEF or the daily prevalence of respiratory symptoms and bronchodilator use were calculated from the panel-specific effect estimates. Fixed effect models were used and, in cases of heterogeneity, random effect models. No clear associations between PM10, BS, SO2 or NO2 and morning PEF, evening PEF, prevalence of respiratory symptoms or bronchodilator use could be detected. Only previous day PM10 was negatively associated with evening PEF, but only in locations where BS was high compared to PM10 concentrations. There were no consistent differences in effect estimates between subgroups based on urban versus suburban, geographical location or mean levels of PM10, BS, SO2 and NO2. The lack of association could not be attributed to a lack of statistical power, low levels of exposure or incorrect trend specifications. In conclusion, the PEACE project did not show effects of particles with a 50% cutoff aerodynamic diameter of 10 μm, black smoke, sulphur dioxide or nitrogen dioxide on morning or evening peak expiratory flow or the daily prevalence of respiratory symptoms and bronchodilator use.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1354-1361
    JournalEuropean Respiratory Journal
    Volume12
    Issue number6
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1998

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