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Cardiovascular implications of exposure to traffic air pollution during exercise


Sharman, JE and Cockcroft, JR and Coombes, JS, Cardiovascular implications of exposure to traffic air pollution during exercise, Q J M: Monthly Journal of The Association of Physicians, 97, (10) pp. 637-643. ISSN 1460-2725 (2004) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1093/qjmed/hch104


Regular aerobic exercise is recommended by physicians to improve health and longevity. However, individuals exercising in urban regions are often in contact with air pollution, which includes particles and gases associated with respiratory disease and cancer. We describe the recent evidence on the cardiovascular effects of air pollution, and the implications of exercising in polluted environments, with a view to informing clinicians and other health professionals. There is now strong evidence that fine and ultra fine particulate matter present in air pollution increases cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. The main mechanisms of disease appear to be related to an increase in the pathogenic processes associated with atherosclerosis. People exercising in environments pervaded by air contaminants are probably at increased risk, due to an exercise-induced amplification in respiratory uptake, lung deposition and toxicity of inhaled pollutants. We make evidence-based recommendations for minimizing exposure to air-borne toxins while exercising, and suggest that this advice be passed on to patients where appropriate.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Cardiovascular medicine and haematology
Research Field:Cardiology (incl. cardiovascular diseases)
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Clinical health not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Sharman, JE (Professor James Sharman)
ID Code:61344
Year Published:2004
Web of Science® Times Cited:33
Deposited By:Menzies Institute for Medical Research
Deposited On:2010-03-02
Last Modified:2010-05-04

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