Air Pollution May Weaken the Bones



Air pollution increases the risk for osteoporosis and bone fractures, researchers report.


Investigators analyzed data from two studies. The first tracked hospital admissions among 9.2 million Medicare recipients in the Northeast over eight years. The second looked at levels of parathyroid hormone, which aids bone health, in 692 middle-aged low-income men in Boston.


The study, in Lancet Planetary Health, found that the risk for bone fractures among people over 65 increased steadily as levels of air pollution — specifically, particulate matter smaller than 2.5 micrometers, or PM 2.5 — went up. Rates were almost 5 percent higher in areas with the highest concentrations of PM 2.5 than in those with the lowest.

发表在《柳叶刀·星球健康》杂志(Lancet Planetary Health)上的该研究发现,65岁以上人群骨折的风险随着空气污染水平的上升而稳步增加——尤其是小于2.5微米的颗粒物的增加,也就是PM2.5浓度的上升。在PM2.5浓度最高的地区,骨折的发病率比浓度最低的地区高出近5%。

The study in middle-aged men found that people living in locations with higher levels of air pollution had lower concentrations of parathyroid hormone and lower levels of bone mineral density.


The studies controlled for race and ethnicity, income, smoking, physical activity and other variables.


“Air pollution is like diluted smoking,” said the senior author, Andrea A. Baccarelli, a professor of environmental medicine at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. “Smoking causes cancer, cardiovascular disease and bone mineral density loss. So does air pollution. Even at pollution levels the Environmental Protection Agency considers acceptable, there is still an increased risk.”

“空气污染就像稀释的烟,”哥伦比亚大学梅尔曼公共卫生学院(Mailman School of Public Health)的环境医学教授、高级作者安德烈亚·A·巴卡雷利(Andrea A. Baccarelli)表示。“吸烟会导致癌症、心血管疾病和骨密度降低。空气污染也是如此。即使污染水平在美国环境保护局(Environmental Protection Agency)认为可以接受的范围内,风险依然在增加。”