Local Air Quality and Heart Attacks (are you at risk?)

Air Pollution from the smokestack of an old  factory

You may not associate air quality with cardiac health but a new study suggests a link. 187,000 people were considered in the study, the average age of those being 63. All those included in the study suffered heart attacks while out of the hospital between 2013 and 2016. Their exposure to ozone air pollution was taken into account given data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency given their regions.

Every 12 parts per billion increase in the ozone level contributed to a 1% increase in the odds of a heart attack. The gender, age nor race made any difference in the findings. The higher the concentration of ozone on the day of their heart attacks confirmed the link which researchers confirmed to be significant.

It was even noted that a correlation between ozone and risk was there even when the concentrations were below the EPA air quality standard. However, the study itself did not have enough data to prove cause and effect but was enough to prompt more research on the matter.

One of the head researchers determined that limiting exposure to high ozone levels may be a preventative step for those already at risk for cardiac arrest. Other studies have also made a connection between exposure to ozone and a higher risk of chronic diseases.

Also, in 2010, the AHA stated that air pollution is a factor that contributes to cardiovascular health. So, if you are concerned that you may be at risk of a heart attack, you may want to take into consideration the amount of air pollution you are being exposed to as there is a link between the two.

It is important, however, to note that more research must be done to show that ever-important cause and effect to completely link the two. Either way, the higher the air pollution around you, the more at risk you may become of a heart attack.

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