Association of lung function with declining ambient air pollution.


Recent studies have found a declining prevalence of respiratory infections in East German children, along with a tremendous improvement of air pollution since 1990. The present study evaluates the effects of improved air quality on lung function. Three consecutive cross-sectional surveys of schoolchildren ages 11-14 years from three communities in East Germany were performed in 1992-1993, 1995-1996, and 1998-1999. Lung function tests were available from 2,493 children. The annual mean of total suspended particulates (TSP) declined from 79 to 25 micro g/m(3), whereas levels for sulfur dioxide declined from 113 to 6 micro g/m(3). Mean forced vital capacity (FVC) and forced expiratory volume in 1 sec (FEV(1)) of the children increased from 1992-1993 to 1998-1999. The adjusted percent change of the geometric mean of FVC was 4.7% for a 50 micro g/m(3) decrease of TSP (p = 0.043) and 4.9% for a decrement of 100 micro g/m(3) SO(2) (p = 0.029). Effects on FEV(1) were smaller and not statistically significant. Our study indicates that a reduction of air pollution in a short time period may improve children's lung function.

Extracted Key Phrases

4 Figures and Tables

Citations per Year

189 Citations

Semantic Scholar estimates that this publication has 189 citations based on the available data.

See our FAQ for additional information.

Cite this paper

@article{Frye2003AssociationOL, title={Association of lung function with declining ambient air pollution.}, author={Christian Frye and Bernd Hoelscher and Josef Cyrys and Matthias Wjst and Heinz-Erich Wichmann and Joachim Heinrich}, journal={Environmental Health Perspectives}, year={2003}, volume={111}, pages={383 - 387} }