Association between Long-Term Exposure to Fine Particulate Matter and Asthma Incidence among School-Aged Children

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  • Hyun-Mook Lim
  • Seung-Woo Ryoo
  • Yun-Chul Hong
  • Soon-Tae Kim
  • Lim, Youn-Hee
  • Dong-Wook Lee

Studies on the correlation of long-term PM2.5 exposure with childhood-onset asthma are limited to western countries. We aimed to study the association between long-term PM2.5 exposure and childhood-onset asthma in South Korea, which has higher ambient PM2.5 levels than western countries. We constructed a retrospective cohort of children aged 6-14 years living in seven metropolitan cities using the National Health Insurance service in South Korea from 2011 to 2016. Children who made a hospital visit with asthma from 2008 to 2010 were excluded. A child was diagnosed with asthma incidence if he or she visited the hospital three times or more with a primary diagnostic code of asthma. A time-varying Cox regression model was constructed to investigate the association of long-term district-level PM2.5 exposure with asthma incidence. Of the 1,425,638 children evaluated, 52,133 showed asthma incidence, with an incidence rate of 6.9 cases/1000 person-years. A 10 mu g/m(3) increase in the 48-month moving average PM2.5 exposure was associated with an elevated risk of asthma incidence, with a hazard ratio of 1.075 (95% confidence interval: 1.024-1.126), and this association was robust for different PM2.5 exposure levels (12-, 36-, and 60-month moving average). In this study, long-term exposure to PM2.5 was associated with asthma incidence in school-aged children in South Korea. Policies to reduce environmental PM2.5 levels and protect children from PM2.5 are necessary to prevent childhood-onset asthma.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1430
Issue number9
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2022

    Research areas

  • particulate matter, children, asthma, long-term exposure, cohort study, AIR-POLLUTION, RISK

ID: 321115350