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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2013  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 96-98

Effect of automobile pollution on pulmonary function tests of exposed hawkers


1 Department of Physiology, PES Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Kuppam, Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh, India
2 Department of Anesthesiology, Basaveshwara Medical College, Chitradurga, Karnataka, India
3 Department of Physiology, Basaveshwara Medical College, Chitradurga, Karnataka, India

Date of Web Publication16-Sep-2013

Correspondence Address:
Amrith Pakkala
Department of Physiology, PES Institute of Medical Sciences & Research, Kuppam, Chittoor Dist., Andhra Pradesh
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0975-9727.118237

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  Abstract 

Background: Modern day life in cities is associated with an enormous increase in vehicular traffic emitting exhausts and polluting the atmosphere. Airborne dust plays a major part in the overall atmospheric pollution and motor vehicle emissions constitute the most significant source of ultra particle in an urban environment. Traffic related air pollution is an occupational health hazard to individuals with a work environment close to traffic. Hawkers who work near areas located in the vicinity of traffic junctions through which maximum number of vehicles passes are more prone to develop health issues pertaining to the respiratory system. The effect of this occupational hazard in this unorganised workforce is not adequately studied. The present study intends to study the effect of air pollution on the pulmonary system in hawkers exposed to automobile exhaust. Materials and Methods: This study was conducted by performing pulmonary function tests (PFT) on 20 hawkers who are exposed to automobile exhaust by virtue of their work venue nearer to traffic junctions and comparing them with 20 other age , gender matched and similar anthropometric profile hawkers who work in a rural setting free from vehicular air pollution. PFT by computerized spirometer measuring FVC, FEV1, FEV1/FVC, PEFR, and FEF25-75% were measured. Statistical analysis was done by Student's t-test (two-tailed, independent) for inter group analysis. Results: On comparison of pulmonary function test in the study and control group was seen that there is decline in dynamic pulmonary function parameters in the study group when compared to controls which is statistically significant. Conclusion: This was a comparative study to demonstrate the effect of air pollution due to automobile exhaust on pulmonary functions of hawkers exposed to a polluted urban environment with a similar group in the rural relatively pollution free environment. PFT by computerized spirometer measuring FVC, FEV1, FEV1/FVC, PEFR, and FEF25-75% were measured. The results were tabulated and statistically analyzed. It was found that there is a significant decline in various PFT parameters recorded in the study group as compared to the control group.

Keywords: Air pollution, automobile exhaust, FEF25-75%, FEV1, FEV1/FVC, FVC, hawkers, PEFR, PFT


How to cite this article:
Pakkala A, Raghavendra T, Ganashree CP. Effect of automobile pollution on pulmonary function tests of exposed hawkers. Muller J Med Sci Res 2013;4:96-8

How to cite this URL:
Pakkala A, Raghavendra T, Ganashree CP. Effect of automobile pollution on pulmonary function tests of exposed hawkers. Muller J Med Sci Res [serial online] 2013 [cited 2019 Oct 16];4:96-8. Available from: http://www.mjmsr.net/text.asp?2013/4/2/96/118237


  Introduction Top


Modern day life in cities is associated with an enormous increase in vehicular traffic emitting exhausts and polluting the atmosphere. Airborne dust plays a major part in the overall atmospheric pollution and motor vehicle emissions constitute the most significant source of ultra particle in an urban environment. Traffic related air pollution is an occupational health hazard to individuals with a work environment close to traffic. Hawkers who work near grounds located in the vicinity of traffic junctions through which maximum number of vehicles passes are more prone to develop health issues pertaining to the respiratory system.

In view of the inherent reserve capacity of the respiratory system as well as the adaptive effect of exercise, it is interesting to know the effect of air pollution in hawkers. [1] When inhaled air pollutants cause damage to the airways and lungs, the prevalence of obstructive, restrictive, and mixed type of functional impairment of the respiratory system has been found to have direct relationship with the dust concentration and duration of exposure. [2]

Fuel combustion is the primary source of a large number of health damaging pollutants. Most components of vehicular exhaust are oxidant in nature and are highly reactive oxygen species (ROS). These ROS are free radicals that cause injury in tissues through membrane damaging processes leading to cell dysfunctions. Although these pollutants may interact with other organ systems, their most obvious effects are in lungs because lungs present the largest exposed surface to the atmosphere. [3],[4],[5]

The effect of this occupational hazard in this unorganized workforce is not adequately studied.

The present study intends to study the effect of air pollution on the pulmonary system in hawkers exposed to automobile exhaust.


  Materials and Methods Top


The present study intends to study the effect of air pollution on the pulmonary system in hawkers exposed to automobile exhaust.

This study was conducted by performing pulmonary function tests (PFT) on 20 hawkers who are exposed to automobile exhaust by virtue of their practising venue nearer to traffic junctions and comparing them with 20 other age, gender matched, and similar anthropometric profile hawkers who work in a rural setting free from vehicular air pollution.

Informed consent was obtained from all subjects who were willing to participate in the study.

Ethical clearance was obtained from institutional ethical committee of PES IMSR, Kuppam.

Inclusion Criteria

Healthy male hawkers who are non-smokers in the age group of 20-30 years who practise at grounds nearer to traffic junctions for more than 1 year are included in the study.

Healthy male hawkers who are non-smokers in the age group of 20-30 years who work in rural areas free from motor vehicular traffic for more than 1 year are included in the control group.

Exclusion Criteria

Any evidence of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, musculoskeletal abnormality, heart disease, anemia, obesity, and smokers.

History of Cardiovascular Disease, Diabetes or Hypertension

The anthropometric data were measured in all subjects. PFT by computerized spirometer measuring FVC, FEV 1 , FEV 1 /FVC, PEFR, and FEF 25-75% were measured.

The subjects were explained about the detailed procedure of computerized spirometry and the actual purpose of the recordings before advising them to rest. PFT measurements were done using the equipment from FIM Company with a minimum of three readings on each occasion at 15 min interval and maximum performed values were taken.

Statistical analysis was done by Student's t-test (two tailed, independent) for inter group analysis.


  Results Top


The control and study group are anthropometrically similar. All PFT parameters studied as shown in [Table 1] are significantly lower in the study group.
Table 1: Comparison of PFT in study and control groups

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  Discussion Top


The present study intends to study the effect of air pollution on the pulmonary system in hawkers exposed to automobile exhaust.

PFT by computerized spirometer measuring FVC, FEV 1 , FEV 1 /FVC, PEFR, and FEF 25-75% were measured.

The results were tabulated and statistically analyzed.

[Table 2] shows the anthropometric parameters of all the subjects in the two groups. It is observed that there is no statistically significant difference with respect to all the parameters measured in both the groups.
Table 2: Anthropometric parameters in study and control groups

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[Table 1] shows the comparison of pulmonary function test in the study and control group. It can be seen that there is decline in dynamic pulmonary function parameters in the study group when compared to controls which is statistically significant.

Diesel exhaust particle organic extracts induce ROS in macrophages and bronchial epithelial cells, two key cell types targeted by particulate matter in the lung. ROS activate the promoters of cytokines and chemokines involved in allergic inflammation through activator protein- 1 and nuclear factor kappa B signalling pathways. Organic diesel exhaust particles also induce apoptosis and necrosis in bronchial epithelial cells via a mitochondrial pathway. [3],[5]

Most of the immune responses responsible for allergic inflammation are due to an enhanced production of immunoglobulin E due poly aromatic hydrocarbons in vehicular emissions. [6] This could be the reason for decline in FVC, FEV 1 , PEFR in hawkers exposed to automobile exhausts.

There is a significant decrease in FEV 1 /FVC in the study group as compared to controls suggesting an obstructive type of abnormality.

FEF 25-75% indicates flow rates in small airways of less than 2 mm diameter. There is significant decrease in this parameter in the study group indicating greater involvement of smaller airways. Particles generated from diesel exhaust are extremely small and are present in the nuclei or accumulation modes, diameters of 0.02 nm and 0.2 nm, respectively. These small sized particles by virtue of their greater surface area to mass ratio can carry a much larger fraction of toxic compounds, such as hydrocarbons or metals on their surface. Hence, chronic exposure to them can lead to chronic inflammation of respiratory tract and lung parenchyma. [7],[8]


  Conclusion Top


This was a comparative study to demonstrate the effect of air pollution due to automobile exhaust on pulmonary functions of hawkers exposed to a polluted urban environment with a similar group in the rural relatively pollution free environment.

PFT by computerized spirometer measuring FVC, FEV 1 , FEV 1 /FVC, PEFR, and FEF 25-75% were measured. The results were tabulated and statistically analyzed.

It was found that there is a significant decline in various PFT parameters recorded in the study group as compared to the control group.

 
  References Top

1.Pakkala A. Adaptability in nature-Are lungs mouldable? Indian J Physiother Occup Ther 2010;4:17-8.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.Jafary ZA, Faridi IA, Qureshi HJ. Effects of airborne dust on lung functions of exposed subjects. Pak J Physiol 2007;3:30-4.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.Dickson RP, Schwartz DA. Acute and chronic responses to toxic inhalations. In: Fishman AP, Elias ZA, Fishman JA, Grippi MA, Senior RM, Pack AI, editors. Fishman's pulmonary diseases and disorders. 4 th ed. China: McGraw Hill Companies; 2008. p. 995-1002.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.Huisingh JL, Bradow R, Jungers R. Application of bioassay to the characterisation of diesel emission particle. In: Waters MD, Nesnow S, Huisingh JI, editors. Application of short term bioassays in the fractionation and analysis of complex environmental mixtures. New York: Pienum Press; 1978. p. 381-418.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.Nel AE, Diaz-Sanchez D, Li N. The role of particulate pollutants in pulmonary inflammation and asthma: Evidence for the involvement of organic chemicals and oxidative stress. Curr Opin Pulm Med 2001;7:20-6.  Back to cited text no. 5
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6.Polosa R, Salvi S, Di Maria GU. Allergic susceptibility associated with diesel exhaust particle exposure: Clear as mud. Arch Environ Health 2002;57:188-93.  Back to cited text no. 6
[PUBMED]    
7.Singhal MK, Khaliq F, Singhal S, Tandon OP. Pulmonary functions in petrol pump workers: A preliminary study. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol 2007;51:244-8.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.Levsen K. The analysis of diesel particulate. Fresenius J Anal Chem 1988;331:467-78.  Back to cited text no. 8
    



 
 
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  [Table 1], [Table 2]



 

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