Air Pollution and ST-Segment Depression in Elderly Subjects

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Air Pollution and ST-Segment Depression in Elderly Subjects

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Title: Air Pollution and ST-Segment Depression in Elderly Subjects
Author: MacCallum, Gail; Canner, Marina J.; Gold, Diane R.; Litonjua, Augusto Ampil; Zanobetti, Antonella; Coull, Brent Andrew; Schwartz, Joel David; Verrier, Richard Leonard; Nearing, Bruce David; Suh MacIntosh, Helen H.; Stone, Peter Howard

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Citation: Gold, Diane R., Augusto A. Litonjua, Antonella Zanobetti, Brent A. Coull, Joel Schwartz, Gail MacCallum, Richard L. Verrier, et al. 2005. Air Pollution and ST-Segment Depression in Elderly Subjects. Environmental Health Perspectives 113(7): 883-887.
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Abstract: Increased levels of daily ambient particle pollution have been associated with increased risk of cardiovascular morbidity. Black carbon (BC) is a measure of the traffic-related component of particles. We investigated associations between ambient pollution and ST-segment levels in a repeated-measures study including 269 observations on 24 active Boston residents 61–88 years of age, each observed up to 12 times from June through September 1999. The protocol involved continuous Holter electrocardiogram monitoring including 5 min of rest, 5 min of standing, 5 min of exercise outdoors, 5 min of recovery, and 20 cycles of paced breathing. Pollution-associated ST-depression was estimated for a 10th- to 90th-percentile change in BC. We calculated the average ST-segment level, referenced to the P-R isoelectric values, for each portion of the protocol. The mean BC level in the previous 12 hr, and the BC level 5 hr before testing, predicted ST-segment depression in most portions of the protocol, but the effect was strongest in the postexercise periods. During post-exercise rest, an elevated BC level was associated with −0.1 mm ST-segment depression (p = 0.02 for 12-hr mean BC; p = 0.001 for 5-hr BC) in continuous models. Elevated BC also predicted increased risk of ST-segment depression ≥0.5 mm among those with at least one episode of that level of ST-segment depression. Carbon monoxide was not a confounder of this association. ST-segment depression, possibly representing myocardial ischemia or inflammation, is associated with increased exposure to particles whose predominant source is traffic.
Published Version: doi:10.1289/ehp.7737
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