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News2010September › Air pollution causes fatal heart attacks › September 2010

Air pollution causes fatal heart attacks

People who live in polluted cities such as New York are far more likely to drop dead from a sudden heart attack than someone living in the country

People who live in polluted cities such as New York are far more likely to drop dead from a sudden heart attack than someone living in the country. Fine particles of pollution increase the risk of a sudden cardiac arrest, researchers have discovered this week. They made the connection between pollution and heart health when they analysed the numbers of cardiac arrests on days of high and low pollution in New York City between 2002 and 2006. Researchers from the Long Island Jewish Medical Center discovered that there were more days of high pollution in the summer. For every increase in the level of air pollution, there was up to a 10 per cent rise in the number of fatal heart attacks. (Source: American Journal of Epidemiology, 2010; doi: 10.1093/aje/kwq217).

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