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Car fumes stunt child lung growth

Now this is a big surprise. *Cough*

From the BBC:

Living too close to a busy road could stunt a child's lung development, US research suggests.

Children who lived within 500 metres of a major road, such as a motorway, were shown to have lung impairment in tests.

Many children live and go to schools near to busy roads and could be at risk, the University of Southern California authors warn in The Lancet.

Experts already know that toxic traffic fumes can trigger lung conditions such as asthma.

There was some controversy a while back about a trucking company, I believe it was, being given permission to build right near a school in town. I don't remember all the details, but I do recall the stories of the many children who had come down with asthma and other respiratory ailments once the company was up and running and belching great fumes all day as they traveled back and forth along the street where the school was located. Add to this the fact that the school itself was on a fairly busy street and those children didn't have a chance, no matter how many protests their parents made, or how many doctors certificates were produced, not to mention how many school days were missed.

The school, needless to say, serves mostly lower income students - which doesn't mean that the teachers and administration didn't care - they too were out there picketing and protesting.

But back to the effects:

Stunted development

But the latest work suggests pollution can stop the lung from growing to its full potential - even in children who are otherwise healthy.

As background air quality did not alter the picture, children living in the countryside but close to a main road would also be at risk, the researchers add.

Children living close to big roads in cities with high levels of background air pollution were likely to be at a greater risk of lung problems however because of the double effect on their lungs, they suggest.

[...]

Stunted development

But the latest work suggests pollution can stop the lung from growing to its full potential - even in children who are otherwise healthy.

As background air quality did not alter the picture, children living in the countryside but close to a main road would also be at risk, the researchers add.

Children living close to big roads in cities with high levels of background air pollution were likely to be at a greater risk of lung problems however because of the double effect on their lungs, they suggest.

The study

They examined the lung function of 3,677 children annually from the age of 10 until they reached 18 - when the lungs are fully developed.

Those who had lived within 500 metres of a motorway had much poorer lung function at the age of 18 than those who had lived 1,500 meters away or more, even when factors such as smoking in the home were taken into account.

read the rest here.

 


Posted by Nanette on 01/25 at 05:10 PM
IntheNews
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