Healthy teenagers are more likely to have abnormal heart rhythms after breathing in fine air pollution, according to the first large study of the effects on otherwise healthy young individuals.
The findings raised concerns among researchers because the increased risk of heart disease and sudden cardiac death appeared to be triggered even when air pollution was within common air quality limits.
Doctors monitored the heart rate and breathed air of more than 300 healthy American teenagers over a 24-hour period. They found that high concentrations of fine particles called PM2.5s increased the risk of having an irregular heartbeat for the next two hours. Similar effects Previously found in adults.
“To our knowledge, this is the first study to report an association between PM2.5 air pollution and cardiac arrhythmias in healthy adolescents,” the researchers said in a statement. Journal of the American Heart Association.
Vehicle exhaust and combustion from the manufacturing and construction industries are a major source of PM2.5s, or particles smaller than 2.5 microns. After inhalation, they can reach the lungs and even blood vessels causing inflammation that can cause disease.
Dr. Fan He, lead author of the study at Penn State College of Medicine, said the results were surprising because healthy teenagers are generally considered to have a low risk of cardiovascular disease. “Our findings show that air pollution can cause heart attacks and contribute to sudden cardiac death in young people, which are devastating events for their families and larger communities,” he told the Guardian.
The researchers examined the effects of air pollution on 322 healthy children aged six to 12 seven years after they were enrolled in the Penn State Child Cohort Study. Participants were provided with a heart monitor and a mobile air sampling kit to walk around for 24 hours, whether indoors or outdoors, while sitting and being active.
The monitors treated two types of arthritis that make people feel like their heart is racing. One is the premature contraction of the upper part of the heart and the other is the premature contraction of the lower chambers or ventricles. Although rarely treated until symptoms develop, premature ventricular contractions increase the risk of heart attack, stroke, heart failure, and sudden cardiac death later in life.
According to the report, the risk of premature ventricular contractions increases by 5% for every 10 micrograms of PM2.5 in the two hours after exposure. Dr. He said the results were “exciting” even with an average daily PM2.5 level of 17 micrograms per cubic meter. In the UK, an average of 35 micrograms per cubic meter per day is considered Low-level pollution.
On days with high air pollution in the UK, Hundreds more people After heart attacks, strokes, and asthma attacks, they are taken to the hospital for emergency care. But certain air pollution increases the rate of lung cancer Awakening of Dormant Mutants. Stimulates the growth of tumors. By 2020, the British Heart Foundation estimates. More than 160,000 people He may die from air pollution-related hypertension and heart failure in the next decade.
Better air quality levels improve heart health in the general population and reduce the burden of other chronic diseases such as cancer and lung disease, he said. But if there is no improvement in air quality, especially when the pollution is worse, people should take precautions.
“Wearing a face mask and avoiding vigorous physical activity on highly polluted days and during rush hours can reduce exposure to air pollution and reduce associated health risks,” he said.