Environmental exposure -- Adverse effects, Air -- Pollution -- Health aspects, Prenatal influences
A range of health effects, including adverse pregnancy outcomes, have been associated with exposure to ambient concentrations of particulate matter (PM) and ozone (O3). The objective of this study was to determine whether maternal exposure to fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and O3 during pregnancy is associated with the risk of term low birthweight and small for gestational age infants in both single and co-pollutant models. Term low birthweight and small for gestational age were determined using all birth certificates from North Carolina from 2003 to 2005. Ambient air concentrations of PM2.5 and O3 were predicted using a hierarchical Bayesian model of air pollution that combined modeled air pollution estimates from the EPA׳s Community Multi-Scale Air Quality (CMAQ) model with air monitor data measured by the EPA׳s Air Quality System. Binomial regression, adjusted for multiple potential confounders, was performed. In adjusted single-pollutant models for the third trimester, O3 concentration was positively associated with small for gestational age and term low birthweight births [risk ratios for an interquartile range increase in O3: 1.16 (95% CI 1.11, 1.22) for small for gestational age and 2.03 (95% CI 1.80, 2.30) for term low birthweight]; however, inverse or null associations were observed for PM2.5 [risk ratios for an interquartile range increase in PM2.5: 0.97 (95% CI 0.95, 0.99) for small for gestational age and 1.01 (95% CI 0.97, 1.06) for term low birthweight]. Findings were similar in co-pollutant models and linear models of birthweight. These results suggest that O3 concentrations in both urban and rural areas may be associated with an increased risk of term low birthweight and small for gestational age births.
Vinikoor-Imler, L., Davis, J., Meyer, R., Messer, L., and Luben, T. (2014). Associations Between Prenatal Exposure to Air Pollution, Small for Gestational Age, and Term Low Birthweight in a State-Wide Birth Cohort. Environmental Research (132) p. 132-139.