For the very first time, a research indicates that being subjected to high levels of traffic air pollution is related to modifications in the mass and size of the right side compartment of the heart. The scientists consider this may lead to the well-known link among air pollution subjection and heart disease.
Lead author Dr. Peter Leary and co-workers report their results in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.
Dr. Leary, who points out right ventricular malfunction among his study interests, states that while earlier studies have previously founded connection between traffic pollution and modifications to the left ventricle, heart malfunction and death from cardiovascular problems, associations among air pollution and the right ventricle have not been so well analyzed.
But right heart malfunction is identified to be a result in common and unusual heart and lung diseases, along with deaths from them, he and his fellow workers note in their research report:
“Using subjection to nitrogen dioxide as a surrogate for direct exposure to traffic-associated air pollution, we were capable to show for the very first time that greater levels of subjection were related with higher right ventricular mass and greater right ventricular end-diastolic quantity. Higher right ventricular mass is also related with enhanced risk for heart malfunction and death with cardiovascular problems.”
For their research, the scientists analyzed data on over 3,500 individuals participating in the Multi-Ethnic Research of Atherosclerosis. The individuals, who were absolutely, free of clinical cardiovascular disease, all gone through heart MRI scans.
The scientists then compared the outcomes of the MRI scans with estimates of the individuals’ subjection to outdoor oxides of nitrogen in the one year leading up to the scans.
Oxides of nitrogen, such as nitrogen dioxide or NO2, are a type of extremely reactive gases that form when fuel is burnt off at high temperatures and are produced primarily by motor vehicles and stationary sources, like as electric utilities and industrial boilers.
More subjection to oxides of nitrogen linked to enhance in right ventricle mass, volume.
The scientists identified higher subjection to NO2 was connected with about 1.0 grams increase in right ventricular mass and a 4.1 mL enhance in right ventricular end-diastolic quantity. They also identified very similar connections among these right ventricle modifications and estimates of subjection to total levels of oxides of nitrogen.
This connection continued to be even following they took into account other factors that impact the connection, such as variations in the individuals’ cardiovascular risk aspects, lung disease, inflammation indicators and their socio-economic scenario.
The authors are very careful to indicate specific potential weak points in their research. For example, using estimations of traffic contamination is not generally trusted, and there are chances that it is not air contamination by itself but some thing related to it, that could be confounding the research and developing the connection.
So they conclude while the research doesn’t confirm that traffic-related air pollution triggered the changes they noticed, it highly points in that direction. Dr. Leary states that their results add to a growing body of proof supporting a relationship between traffic-related air pollution and cardiovascular disease, and adds:
“The many undesirable effects of traffic pollution on individual health support sustained attempts to decrease this burden.”