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 ≤0.1μm, 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 ≥65years), being the group that presented the greatest risk. An interquartile increase of 4.73μg/m3 in UFP (lag 5days) was associated with respiratory outpatient visits with a relative risk (RR) of 1.1458 [95% CI (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.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We acknowledge the FONIS Project No SA08I20055 for supporting this study.
- Relative risk
- Residential wood combustion
- Ultrafine particles