ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
Keep Asthma, Allergies at Bay for the Holidays
Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Eight Spiritual Universal Principles in the Art of Practice
Naprapathy: A Hands-On Approach to Pain Management
Placebo Acupuncture Tied to Higher IVF Pregnancies
ANIMAL CARE
Beware of Dog Bites
Safe Toys for Dogs
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
BONES & JOINTS
Stem Cells Might Treat Tough Fractures
Rheumatoid Arthritis Rising Among U.S. Women
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
CANCER
Where You Live May Affect Your Cancer Diagnosis
Researchers ID Genetic Markers for Esophageal Cancer
Green Tea Compound Slowed Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia
CAREGIVING
Undoing the 'Big Baby' Trend
Caregiving May Lengthen Life
Injected Medication Errors a Major Problem
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Potassium-Rich Foods May Cut Stroke, Heart Disease Risk
Common Antioxidant Might Slow Parkinson's
Walk 100 Steps a Minute for 'Moderate' Exercise
COSMETIC
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
Get Sugared!.... Its a sweet choice for hair removal
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
DENTAL, ORAL
Sports Drinks May Be Tough on Teeth
Scientists Find Gene for Tooth Enamel
Holistic Dentistry-My View
DIABETES
Laughter May Lower Heart Attack Risk in Diabetics
Formula Puts Doctor, Patient Glucose Readings on Same Page
Strict Blood Sugar Lowering Won't Ease Diabetes Heart Risk
DIET, NUTRITION
School Meals Need to Get Healthier
Atkins Diet Tougher on Heart After Weight Loss
Teens Lose More Weight Using Healthy Strategies
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Is It Safe to Go in the Gulf Coast's Water?
Ozone-Depleting Inhalers Being Phased Out
Household Chemicals May Affect Cholesterol Levels
EYE CARE, VISION
Florida Vision Test Law: Fewer Traffic Deaths Among Elderly
Certain Diabetes Drugs May Pose Eye Risk
Omega-3 Foods May Lower Eye Disease Risk
FITNESS
Almost Two-Thirds of Americans Meet Exercise Guidelines
Avoiding a Holiday Season of Discontent
Exercise Helps Reduce Falls in Young and Old
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Intestinal Bacteria Trigger Immune Response
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
GENERAL HEALTH
Heavy Alcohol Use Linked to Cancer
When Healing Becomes a Commodity
Biomarkers May Help Measure Rate of Decline in Dementia
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
Airport Full Body Scanners Pose No Health Threat: Experts
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Irregular Heartbeat Tied to Alzheimer's Disease
Brown Rice Tied to Better Heart Health in Study
Too Much Red Meat May Shorten Life Span
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Now Reported in All 50 States
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Childhood Dairy Intake Boosts Bone Health Later On
Bullying Seems to Affect Kids Years Later
Guard Kids' Eyes Against Long-Term Sun Damage
MEN'S HEALTH
More Vitamin C May Mean Less Chance of Gout
Strenuous Daily Workout May Keep Cancer at Bay
Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Breast-Fed Baby May Mean Better Behaved Child
Optimism May Boost Immune System
The 3LS Wellness Program for Reversing Chronic Symptoms and Creating Lasting Health
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Breast-Feeding May Protect a Woman's Heart
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Heart Defects in Newborns Linked to Antidepressants
SENIORS
A Little Alcohol May Stave Off Alzheimer's
Mediterranean Diet Plus Exercise Lowers Alzheimer's Risk
Boost In Elderly Population Will Be Felt Worldwide
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Woman in America Are Delaying Motherhood, Study Says
Calcium Helps Ward Off Colon Cancer
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
Add your Article

Vest Monitors 'Individual' Air Pollution

By Amanda Gardner
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Scientists have used the novel idea of a "pollution vest" to determine that individual exposure to air pollution can harm a person's heart health beyond whatever damage that community-level exposure can cause.

"The challenge of air pollution is that what people are exposed to and what most studies talk about . . . rarely represent the micro environment of what's in your house," explained American Heart Association spokesman Dr. Russell Luepker, Mayo professor of epidemiology and community health at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. "People have been working to try to get individual monitors that people can wear, so they can know what people are really inhaling as opposed to what they might be inhaling a mile away from where the monitor was."

"People shouldn't panic, but it's important that people be aware that air pollution is a contributor to cardiovascular disease," said Robert Bard, co-investigator of a study that was presented Wednesday at the heart association's annual scientific sessions, in New Orleans. "Things people can do include supporting legislation for cleaner air initiatives and, if somebody has cardiovascular disease, they may consider avoiding exposures to air pollution during peak levels, because this can potentially be a trigger for a cardiovascular event. Things everyone can do include limiting commutes and contributing less to production of pollutants."

Previous research has drawn an association between fine particulate matter air pollution and an increased risk for cardiovascular events.

It's unclear however, if daily changes in particulate matter might affect the heart and if ambient (outside) sources of air pollution have different effects than non-ambient (inside) sources.

The authors of this study were able to determine just that.

Sixty-five participants in the cardiovascular sub-study of the Detroit Exposure and Aerosol Research Study (DEARS) wore vests outfitted with monitors to collect both personal and community-based levels of air pollutants on five consecutive days during both the summer and the winter.

All volunteers were nonsmokers and lived in nonsmoking households in three different areas of Detroit.

"We specifically looked at the pollution they were individually exposed to," explained Bard, who is a research associate in the division of cardiovascular medicine at the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor.

The average person in the study experienced increased blood pressure (1.6 millimeter of mercury) and a narrowing of blood vessels related to personal air pollution within two days of exposure. These changes could lead to heart attacks, strokes and heart failure, the authors stated.

Broader, community exposure was linked with poorer blood vessel functioning, but not higher blood pressure.

The air pollution measured was within parameters considered acceptable by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

And almost one-third of volunteers were exposed to secondhand smoke, even though they were nonsmokers living in nonsmoking households.

According to the study authors, a 10-microgram per cubic meter increase in air pollution at the community level leads to a 1 percent chance of dying the day after exposure, amounting to about one extra death per day in an area of 1 million to 5 million people.

More information

Learn more about air pollution, heart disease and stroke at the American Heart Association.



SOURCES: Robert L. Bard, M.S., research associate, division of cardiovascular medicine, University of Michigan Medical Center, Ann Arbor; Russell V. Luepker, M.D., American Heart Association spokesman, Mayo professor, department of epidemiology and community health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Nov. 12, 2008, presentation, American Heart Association annual scientific sessions, New Orleans

Last Updated: Nov. 12, 2008

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