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Aerobiologia

, Volume 7, Issue 2, pp 152–159 | Cite as

Effects of some indoor environmental factors on respiratory symptoms and lung function in a sample of young non smokers in North Italy

  • Giovanni Viegi
  • Laura Carrozzi
  • Paolo Paoletti
  • Mariella Vellutini
  • Licia Ballerin
  • Patrizia Biavati
  • Francesco Di Pede
  • Marzia Pedreschi
  • Paola Modena
  • Sandra Baldacci
  • Emilio Diviggiano
  • Tristano Sapigni
  • Carlo Giuntini
Historical Biographies

Summary

We evaluated the effects of some indoor environmental factors in a non smoking subsample (n=381, age 8–19 years) of the general population living in the Po River Delta. Each subject completed an interviewer-administered standardized questionnaire on respiratory symptoms and risk factors. Acceptable maneuvers of forced vital capacity and slope of alveolar plateau of nitrogen were obtained in 96% and 59% of the subjects, respectively. In the houses there were more frequently natural gas for cooking (86%) than bottled gas (14%) and central heating (82%) than stove (18%). As regards passive smoking exposure, 18% of subjects had both parents smoking, 50% had one parent smoking. Significantly higher prevalence rates of wheeze, dyspnea, diagnosis of asthma were found in subjects of both sexes using bottled gas for cooking in comparison to those using natural gas, when also exposed to passive smoking. An insignificant trend towards higher symptom rates was shown by those using stove, instead of central heating. Lung function was affected only in females: those with both parents smoking had reduced forced expirograms, those with bottled gas for cooking or stove for heating had a decreased peak expiratory flow. Interactions of stove and passive smoking on peak expiratory flow and on slope of alveolar plateau were statistically significant. These findings confirm the mild adverse respiratory effects of certain home environment factors shown by other epidemiologic surveys in North Europe and in the USA. They have been a basis for the implementation, under the auspices of National Research Council and Electric Energy Authority, of future specific studies in which continuous monitoring of indoor pollutants and repeated recording of symptoms and lung function in North and Central Italy will be performed.

Key words

epidemiological survey indoor pollution lung function tests passive smoking respiratory symptoms 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giovanni Viegi
    • 1
  • Laura Carrozzi
    • 1
  • Paolo Paoletti
    • 1
  • Mariella Vellutini
    • 1
  • Licia Ballerin
    • 2
    • 3
  • Patrizia Biavati
    • 2
    • 3
  • Francesco Di Pede
    • 1
  • Marzia Pedreschi
    • 1
  • Paola Modena
    • 1
  • Sandra Baldacci
    • 1
  • Emilio Diviggiano
    • 1
  • Tristano Sapigni
    • 2
    • 3
  • Carlo Giuntini
    • 1
  1. 1.Istituto di Fisiologia Clinica CNR e Clinica Medica 2aUniversità di PisaPisaItaly
  2. 2.Istituto di Patologia GeneraleUniversità degli Studi di FerraraFerraraItaly
  3. 3.USL 31Adria (RO)Italy

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