Background/aim This study provides further evidence that short-term changes in air pollution increase the exacerbation of eczema and the effect of NO2 may be more robust than other pollutants.
Methods We used a time-stratified case-crossover design. Daily diagnosed visits were collected from Air Force General Hospital from April 2012 through April 2014. Daily air pollution including concentrations of fine particulates (PM2.5), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), sulfur dioxide (SO2) and daily meteorological data were also obtained. By using conditional logistic regression models, we estimated odds ratios (OR) and their corresponding 95% confidence intervals (95% CI) for eczema visits associated with per interquartile-range (IQR) increase in each pollutant, adjusting for daily ambient temperature and relative humidity.
Results PM2.5, NO2 and SO2 were found to be significantly associated with increased outpatient visits for eczema. The ORs were 1.03 (95% CI: 1.02 to 1.04) and 1.03 (95% CI: 1.02 to 1.05) for an IQR increase in PM2.5 for lags 2 and 7 days and this association persisted in 2-pollutants and 3-pollutants models. The ORs were 1.01 (95% CI: 1.00 to 1.02), 1.03 (95% CI: 1.02 to 1.04), 1.01 (95% CI: 1.00 to 1.02) and 1.01 (95% CI: 1.00 to 1.03) for an IOR increase in NO2 for the current day and for lags 2, 5 and 7 days and this association persisted in 3-pollutants models. The ORs for an IQR increase in SO2 for the current day and for lags 5 and 7 days were 1.03 (95% CI: 1.01 to 1.04), 1.01 (95% CI: 1.00 to 1.03) and 1.02 (95% CI: 1.01 to 1.04), but only association for lags 5 day was significant in 3-pollutants models.
Conclusion Eczema is a common chronic inflammatory skin disease that place a large burden. An association between air pollution and skin problems has been suggested. However, epidemiological researches on the effects of air pollutants on ezema are still limited. We aim to evaluate the associations between short-term changes in air pollution and the outpatient visits for eczema in Beijing.
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