A study by Mayo Clinic shows that children living near traffic intersections at greater risk of developing asthma.
Mayo Clinic researchers recently released data showing children who lived near major highway or railroad intersections have a higher risk of developing asthma. The researchers used this study to show how neighborhood environment is a risk factor in understanding the development of pediatric asthma. The study was in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.
“Using propensity score, children who lived in census tracts facing the intersection with major highways or railways had about a 40 to 70 percent increased risk of developing childhood asthma,” said Young Juhn, M.D. of Mayo’s Department of Community Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine. “What this tells us is that clinicians need to be concerned about neighborhood environment beyond home environment to understand the individual asthma case.”
The study was a retrospective, population-based birth cohort where researchers studied 3,970 people born between 1976 and 1979 in Rochester, Minnesota. Of the 1,947 subjects living in census tracts that faced intersections, 6.4 percent developed asthma, while 4.5 percent of those living in census tracts not facing intersections developed asthma. Dr. Juhn and his colleagues are currently conducting research that looks at the influence of neighborhood environment on other disease outcomes.