, Volume 58, Issue 5, pp 647-648
Date: 30 Jul 2013

Is it traffic-related air pollution or road traffic noise, or both? Key questions not yet settled!

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There is substantial evidence for the association of long-term exposure to both road traffic noise and to ambient and traffic-related air pollution on cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) (Brook et al. 2010; van Kempen and Babisch 2012). As traffic is the main common source of noise and air pollution, the question remains whether there is a mutual confounding effect of these stressors on common cardiovascular outcomes (Brook et al. 2010; Babisch 2011). Identifying whether air pollution and/or noise drive this association is relevant to implement adequate abatement policies.

In this issue, Tétreault et al. (2013) provide the first systematic review that assesses whether the cardiovascular effects of long-term exposure to road traffic noise or to air pollution are mutually confounded based on the existing literature. Interestingly, this review comes to the conclusion that there is not much confounding (i.e. a change below 10 % in effect estimates), although this confounding is higher in some of ...

This Editorial is part of the special issue: "Environment and Health Reviews".