Health risks caused by short term exposure to ultrafine particles generated by residential wood combustion: A case study of Temuco,Chile

Temuco is one of the most highly wood smoke polluted cities in Chile; however, there is scarce evidence of respiratory morbidity due to fine particulate matter. We aimed to estimate the relationship between daily concentration of ultrafine particles (UFP), with an aerodynamic diameter <= 0.1 mu m, and outpatient visits for respiratory illness at medical care centers of Temuco, Chile, from August the 20th, 2009 to June the 30th, 2011. The Air Pollution Health Effects European Approach (APHEA2) protocol was followed, and a multivariate semi-parametric Poisson regression model was fitted with GAM techniques using R-Project statistical package; controlling for trend, seasonality, and confounders. The daily UFP were measured by a MOUDI NR-110 sampler. We found that results of the statistical analyses show significant associations between UFP and respiratory outpatient visits, with the elderly (population years), being the group that presented the greatest risk An interquartile increase of 4.73 mu g/m3 in UFP (lag 5 days) was associated with respiratory outpatient visits with a relative risk (RR) of 1.1458 195% Cl (1.0497-1.2507)]for the elderly. These results show novel findings regarding the relevance of daily UFP concentrations and health risk, especially for susceptible population in a wood smoke polluted city. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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