Days With Higher Air Pollution Recorded More Heart Attack, Stroke, Asthma Cases

The research analysed data from nine cities in the UK.

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 21 – Heart attacks, strokes and acute asthma attacks are revealed to be higher, on days with sudden spike in air pollution in the UK, according to a study.

On days with high pollution levels across the nine cities surveyed, there was an average of 231 additional hospital admissions for stroke, with an extra 193 children and adults taken to hospitals, to be treated for asthma attack.

The BBC reported that data from London, Birmingham, Bristol, Derby, Liverpool, Manchester, Nottingham, Oxford and Southampton were analysed by a team at King’s College London.

Dr Heather Walton of King’s College London’s Environmental Research Group said that air pollution reduction policies concentrated in the main on effects connected to life expectancy.

“However, health studies show clear links with a much wider range of health effects,” she said, according to the BBC.

Days when pollutant levels were in the top half of the annual range saw an extra 124 cardiac arrests on average.

According to the study, among the long-term risks associated with high pollution levels are stunted lung growth and low birth weight.

The King’s College research said that reducing air pollution by a fifth would see a drop in incidents of lung cancer by between 5 per cent and 7 per cent across the nine cities surveyed.

“It’s clear that the climate emergency is in fact also a health emergency,” the National Health Service (NHS) chief executive, Simon Stevens said.

“Since these avoidable deaths are happening now – not in 2025 or 2050 – together we need to act now,” he added.

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