Effect of dust storm events on daily emergency admissions for respiratory diseases
Version of Record online: 21 DEC 2011
© 2011 The Authors. Respirology © 2011 Asian Pacific Society of Respirology
Volume 17, Issue 1, pages 143–148, January 2012
How to Cite
TAM, W. W.S., WONG, T. W., WONG, A. H.S. and HUI, D. S.C. (2012), Effect of dust storm events on daily emergency admissions for respiratory diseases. Respirology, 17: 143–148. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1843.2011.02056.x
- Issue online: 21 DEC 2011
- Version of Record online: 21 DEC 2011
- Accepted manuscript online: 24 AUG 2011 11:40AM EST
- Received 26 April 2011; invited to revise 29 June 2011; revised 30 June 2011; accepted 28 July 2011 (Associate Editor: Shu Hashimoto).
- air pollution;
- dust storm;
- hospital admission;
- respiratory diseases
Background and objective: The harmful effect of dust storm on lung health is controversial. This study aimed to assess any associations between dust storms and emergency hospital admissions due to respiratory disease in Hong Kong.
Methods: Data on daily emergency admissions for respiratory diseases to major hospitals in Hong Kong, and indices of air pollutants and meteorological variables from January 1998 to December 2002 were obtained from several government departments. We identified five dust storm days during the study period. Independent t-tests were used to compare the mean daily number of admissions on dust storm and non-dust storm days. Case-crossover analysis using the Poisson regression was used to examine the effects of PM10 to emergency hospital admissions due to respiratory diseases.
Results: Significant increases in emergency hospital admission due to COPD were found 2 days after dust storm episode. The relative risk of PM10 for lag 2 days was 1.05 (95% CI: 1.01–1.09) per 10 µg/m3.
Conclusions: Dust storms have an adverse effect on emergency hospital admission for COPD in Hong Kong. This also suggests the adverse effect of coarse particles on lung health.