The variables associated with mouse allergen levels in the home were frequency of mouse sightings, use of traps or pesticides for mice, presence of holes in ceilings or walls, absence of a cat, and living in a building with fewer than eight floors. Statistically significant neighborhood differences in levels of mouse allergen and report of rodents in the home were also observed.
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However, high levels of mouse allergen were also found in many homes where mothers reported never seeing mice. Key words: asthma, home characteristics, mouse allergen, Mus m 1. Reproduced with permission from Environmental Health Perspectives — An epidemic of neurobehavioral problems is sweeping through children today. And the prevalence of some of these disabilities may be increasing. Dust samples were collected at the time of home interview in homes as part of an ongoing longitudinal birth cohort study of 1, infants and their asthmatic siblings. The analysis employed lower and upper cut points for group 1 dust mite?
Subject residences were geocoded to assess population density from the U. Census, and multiple logistic regression was used to control for confounding. The portion of homes at the lower cutpoint for dust mite, cockroach, cat, and dog allergens were In all, Forty-nine percent of the homes had two or more allergens at the lower cut point, and Higher education of the mother, higher household income, living in a single-family home in a less densely populated area with fewer people per room, and being a white household were associated with elevated dust mite, cat, and dog allergens and low cockroach allergen.
In contrast, low income, living in a multifamily home in a high population density area with a higher occupancy rate per room, and being a Hispanic or black household were associated with elevated cockroach allergens and low concentrations of dust mite, cat, and dog allergens. Although the presence of an individual allergen is more likely associated with one or more socioeconomic or ethnic factors, most homes typically have multiple allergen burdens in excess of concentrations thought to be associated with sensitization and exacerbation of asthma.
Mite and cockroach allergens have distinct and opposite associations with socioeconomic factors and population density. Key words: aeroallergens, asthma, cats, cockroaches, dogs, dust mites, indoor air, socioeconomic factors. Consideration of the health impacts of the built environment—the human-modified places where we live, work, play, shop, and more—has been a key element in the ongoing evolution of the field of environmental health. Substantial scientific evidence gained in the past decade has shown that various aspects of the built environment can have profound, directly measurable effects on both physical and mental health outcomes, particularly adding to the burden of illness among ethnic minority populations and low-income communities.
Lack of sidewalks, bike paths, and recreational areas in some communities discourages physical activity and contributes to obesity; in those low-income areas that do have such amenities, the threat of crime keeps many people inside. Income segregation—the practice of housing the poor in discrete areas of a city—has also been linked with obesity and adverse mental health outcomes. Dilapidated housing is associated with exposures to lead, asthma triggers such as mold, moisture, dust mites, and rodents , and mental health stressors such as violence and social isolation.
More recently, the field has begun to take an even wider-angle view, as investigators have begun using innovative new tools and approaches to explore the multifaceted interrelationships between the built environment and population-level health outcomes.
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It has become increasingly clear that the built environment not only directly impacts our health, but also factors in less direct, complex ways into the health of individuals residing in single-family homes, housing projects, blocks, neighborhoods, and entire cities. Studies have shown that negative aspects of the built environment tend to interact with and magnify health disparities, compounding already distressing conditions. Elucidating the associations between the built environment and health disparities has proven to be an enormous challenge to the scientific community, requiring the development of new research paradigms, hypotheses, and methodologies.
Traditional studies have often lumped many important components of the built environment into a blanket socioeconomic status variable. But this approach makes it nearly impossible to tease out specific housing and community characteristics related to disease.
So, although the traditional tools of environmental health science are still an important part of the mix, research endeavors in this area are now incorporating aspects of sociology, psychology, demography, urban planning, and architecture. Just as significantly, research efforts are reaching beyond the boundaries of the scientific community, embracing rapid translation of research into effective intervention and active collaboration with community members as central concepts in their research protocols.
Lead exposure can result in neurological damage, including intellectual impairment, developmental delays, learning disabilities, memory loss, hearing problems, attention deficits, hyperactivity, and behavioral disorders. In extreme cases, lead exposure can result in organ failure, convulsions, coma, and death.
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While lead is potentially harmful to individuals at any age, it is particularly dangerous to children under the age of six, because their nervous systems are especially vulnerable and because lead uptake is much higher in the early years. The monetary benefits to communities of preventing lead poisoning are enormous. This estimate does not include other benefits, such as avoided medical care, special education, crime, stress on parents and children, avoided attention deficit disorder, and many other avoidable adverse health effects. Daily self-reports of asthma symptoms were obtained from study diaries and compared with ambient air pollution levels in marginal repeated measures logistic regression models.
We defined days with asthma symptoms as any day a child reported at least one mild asthma episode.
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Because of variable observation periods for participants, we estimated both between- and within-subject air pollutant effects. We did not find any association between sulfur dioxide SO2 and the odds of asthma symptoms. In multipollutant models, the separate pollutant effects were smaller.
The overall effect of an increase in both CO and PM1. We conclude that there is an association between change in short-term air pollution levels, as indexed by PM and CO, and the occurrence of asthma symptoms among children in Seattle. Although PM effects on asthma have been found in other studies, it is likely that CO is a marker for vehicle exhaust and other combustion by-products that aggravate asthma. Key words: ambient air pollution, asthma, carbon monoxide, children, panel study, particulate matter, sulfur dioxide, symptoms, within-subject effects.
A repeat measures analysis showed that blood lead levels declined up to three-years post-intervention. The results at each successive collection time were significantly lower than at the previous post-intervention time except for the difference between the levels at two and three years. Individual interior lead hazard control treatments as grouped by Interior Strategy were not a significant predictor of post-intervention blood lead levels. However, children living in dwellings where exterior lead hazard control interventions were done had lower blood lead levels at one-year post-intervention than those living in dwellings without the exterior interventions all other factors being equal , but those differences were only significant when the mean exterior paint lead loading at pre-intervention was about the 90th percentile 7.
This observation suggests that exterior lead hazard control can be an important component of a lead hazard control plan. Children who were six to eleven months of age at pre-intervention had a significant increase in blood lead at one-year post-intervention, probably due to other exposures. The purpose of this study was to assess the feasibility and effectiveness of physical interventions to mitigate house dust mite allergens in this setting.
Carpets and upholstered furniture were subjected to a single treatment of either dry steam cleaning plus vacuuming carpet only or intensive vacuuming alone. Bed interventions consisted of complete encasement of the mattress, box spring, and pillows plus either weekly professional or in-home laundering of non-encased bedding. Dust samples were collected at baseline and again at 3 days carpet and upholstery only and 2, 4, and 8 weeks post-treatment.
We compared pretreatment mean allergen concentrations and loads to post treatment values and performed between-group analyses after adjusting for differences in the pre treatment means. Levels approached pretreatment values by 4 weeks post treatment in the intensive vacuuming group, whereas steam cleaning plus vacuuming effected a decrease that persisted for up to 8 weeks. Based on these data, we conclude that physical interventions offer practical, effective means of reducing house dust mite allergen levels in low-income, urban home environments.
In a sample of nonsmoking African-American and Dominican women, we evaluated the effects on birth outcomes of prenatal exposure to airborne PAHs monitored during pregnancy by personal air sampling, along with ETS estimated by plasma cotinine, and an organophosphate pesticide OP estimated by plasma chlorpyrifos CPF.
Plasma CPF was used as a covariate because it was the most often detected in plasma and was highly correlated with other pesticides frequently detected in plasma. Further analyses of pesticides will be carried out. Possible explanations of the failure to find a significant effect of PAHs in the Hispanic subsample are discussed. This study provides evidence that environmental pollutants at levels currently encountered in New York City adversely affect fetal development. From that meeting came recommendations for future research including a need for more complete individual personal exposure assessments so that determinations of personal exposures to pollutants could be made.
In the spring of , NUATRC held a second such workshop to review progress made in this area during the intervening 7 years. Peer-reviewed articles from the workshop are published in this issue of Environmental Health Perspectives Supplements. As in , academic, government, and industry scientists participated.
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Dave Guinnup of the Environmental Protection Agency discussed the nature of air toxics, their definition, and the basis for federal regulation. George Leikauf from the University of Cincinnati reviewed the workshop and subsequent research in this field. David Corry from Baylor College of Medicine highlighted new insights into asthma pathogenesis while Stephen Redd from the Centers for Disease Control presented an overview of asthma epidemiology as well as the societal costs of the disease.
Mary White Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry discussed recent epidemiologic investigations by public health agencies into community concerns about asthma and hazardous air pollutants. David Peden University of North Carolina reviewed scientific studies into the links between asthma and air toxics as well as criteria air pollutants.
In a session on occupational asthma, Lee Petsonk National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health discussed risk factors for work-related asthma, whereas Ralph Delfino University of California, Irvine addressed limitations of extrapolating from occupational asthma to asthma in the general population. These presentations were followed by panel discussions focusing on future research programs, both for NUATRC and similar research institutions.
Recommendations for future research included improved assessments of personal exposure to air toxics as well as research focused on specific hazardous air pollutants. The latter recommendation was based on medical literature that suggests certain pollutants from the list of air toxics are most likely to adversely affect respiratory health. Key words: air toxics,asthma, hazardous air pollutants. Environ Health Perspect suppl 4 — Despite continued controversy, the environmental justice movement has provided some insight by suggesting that disadvantaged communities face greater likelihood of exposure to ambient hazards.
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