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Prenatal exposure to pollution especially dangerous for children with asthma
Date:5/20/2012

ty as a child grows, the researchers used spirometry, a technique which measures the volume and speed of air as it is exhaled from the lungs. For this study, multiple lung function tests were performed and significant changes were noted in four measurements: the FVC, or forced vital capacity, which reflects the volume of air that can be blown out after fully inhaling; the FEV1, or forced expiratory volume in 1 second, which is the volume of air that can forcibly be blown out in one second, after fully inhaling; the FEF, or forced expiratory flow, which reflects the flow of air coming out of the lungs during the middle portion of a forced exhalation; and the PEF, or peak expiratory flow, which is the maximal flow achieved when air is forcibly exhaled immediately after being inhaled.

Measurement models were performed separately for boys and for girls, and were adjusted for height, age, race and socioeconomic status.

At the conclusion of the study, the researchers found that exposure to nitrogen dioxideduring the first and second trimesters was associated with lower pulmonary function growth in both girls and boys in childhood. Among girls, exposure to nitrogen dioxide during the first trimester was associated with lower FEV1 growth and exposure to nitrogen dioxide during the second trimester was associated with lower FEF growth. Among boys, nitrogen dioxide exposure during the first and second trimesters of pregnancy was associated with lower FVC growth. Exposure to particulate matter during the first trimester was associated with lower FEV1 and FVC growth in girls; similar exposures during the third trimester were associated with lower PEF and FEF growth among boys.

"This finding adds to the evidence that current air pollution levels continue to have adverse effects on human health," Dr. Padula said. "Few studies have examined prenatal exposure to air pollution and subsequent lung function in childhood. These results suggest that we need t
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Contact: Nathaniel Dunford
ndunford@thoracic.org
212-315-8620
American Thoracic Society
Source:Eurekalert

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