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To what extent can environmental pollutants and alcohol affect GI health?
Date:5/31/2009

CHICAGO, IL (May 31, 2009) - New research quantifies the precise effects of environmental pollutants and alcohol intake on gastrointestinal (GI) health. Both studies being presented this week during Digestive Disease Week 2009 (DDW) offer concrete evidence that the environment and alcohol intake can affect GI health and share important insights into new directions for future research. DDW is the largest international gathering of physicians and researchers in the fields of gastroenterology, hepatology, endoscopy and gastrointestinal surgery.

"Past research has indicated that elements in our environment produce reactions that affect our health," said Marcia R. Cruz-Correa, MD, PhD, FASGE, AGAF, University of Puerto Rico. "The research presented today offers new insights about the influences of a variety of environmental factors, some of which may help explain the high prevalence of certain health conditions."

Non-Specific Abdominal Pain: Could Air Pollution be the Culprit? (Abstract #1055)

Abdominal pain is among the most common reasons for visits to emergency departments and a new study suggests air pollution could play a role, especially among young women. The study builds upon previous research linking air pollution to adverse health effects.

"The study adds to the body of evidence that air pollution exposure negatively affects health," said Dr. Gilaad Kaplan, MD, assistant professor of medicine, University of Calgary. "In addition to lung and cardiovascular disease, this study demonstrates that there is also the potential for air pollution to affect the gastrointestinal tract."

Kaplan and his co-authors set out to study the link between air pollution and non-specific abdominal pain (NSAP). NSAP is diagnosed when the cause of abdominal pain is not discovered and triggers of acute pain are not known. The investigators identified more than 95,000 patients discharged from emergency depart
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Contact: Aimee Frank
newsroom@gastro.org
301-941-2620
American Gastroenterological Association
Source:Eurekalert

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