Effect of Outdoor Airborne Particulate Matter on Daily Death Counts

National Institute of Statistical Sciences, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-4162, USA.
Environmental Health Perspectives (Impact Factor: 7.98). 06/1995; 103(5):490-7. DOI: 10.1289/ehp.95103490
Source: PubMed


To investigate the possible relationship between airborne particulate matter and mortality, we developed regression models of daily mortality counts using meteorological covariates and measures of outdoor PM10. Our analyses included data from Cook County, Illinois, and Salt Lake County, Utah. We found no evidence that particulate matter < or = 10 microns (PM10) contributes to excess mortality in Salt Lake County, Utah. In Cook County, Illinois, we found evidence of a positive PM10 effect in spring and autumn, but not in winter and summer. We conclude that the reported effects of particulates on mortality are unconfirmed.

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    • "This background influence might be affected by behavior and eating habits, even without changes in temperature or pressure. In addition to diurnal rhythms, heart rate variability might also be affected by other factors such as particulate matter (Styer et al. 1995; Creason et al. 2001). Third, we examined physiological changes only up to 1 h after eating, so we are unable to comment on whether there might be longer term influences. "
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    • "We compute multiple analyses sweeping across the county from west to east and show that one can 'cut' along the longitude passing just west of Chicago and find no effect of PM2.5 to the west and a small effect of PM2.5 on statistical deaths to the east. Both Styer et al. [8] and Smith et al. [9] make the point if the effect of the pollutant is not consistent, then it is unlikely that you have a causative agent. We agree. "
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    • "There are a large number of time series studies that assess the short-term health effects of fine particle pollution, with an emphasis on mortality and morbidity, by means of fitting Poisson regression models at a community level (Schwartz and Dockery 1992; Styer et al. 1995; Katsouyanni et al. 1997; Samet et al. 1997; Anderson et al. 2001; Garrett and Casimiro 2011). Most studies have found that particles with an aerodynamic diameter less than 2.5 μm (PM 2.5 ) are more strongly associated with respiratory-related death and disease than coarse particles (Wichmann 2007; Kan et al. 2007). "
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