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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(4), 1110-1125; doi:10.3390/ijerph8041110

Respiratory Health Symptoms among Students Exposed to Different Levels of Air Pollution in a Turkish City

1,* , 2
1 Public Health Department, Istanbul Faculty of Medicine, Istanbul University, 34093, Çapa, Istanbul, Turkey 2 Environmental Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering and Architecture, Anadolu University, İki Eylül Campus, 26555, Eskişehir, Turkey 3 Department of Biostatistics and Medical Informatics, Istanbul Faculty of Medicine, Istanbu University, 34390, Çapa, Istanbul, Turkey
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 February 2011 / Revised: 10 March 2011 / Accepted: 1 April 2011 / Published: 14 April 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Health Risk Assessment)
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In this study, we aimed to investigate the frequency of respiratory health symptoms among high school students attending schools at industrial, urban and rural areas in a Turkish city. Three schools located in different zones of the city having different pollution characteristics were chosen based on the pollutant distribution maps using Geographical Information Systems (GIS) software. A cross-sectional survey was performed among 667 high school students in the schools. Outdoor and indoor nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and ozone (O3) concentrations were also measured by passive samplers in the same schools to investigate possible routes of exposure. Chronic pulmonary disease (OR = 1.49; 95%CI: 1.11–1.99; p = 0.008), tightness in the chest (OR = 1.57; 95%CI: 1.22–2.02; p = 0.001), morning cough (OR = 1.81 95%CI: 1.19–2.75; p = 0.006) were higher among students in the industrial zone where nitrogen dioxide and ozone levels were also highest. There were no indoor sources of nitrogen dioxide and ozone exists in the schools except for the dining hall. As a conclusion, this study has noticed that air pollution and respiratory health problems among high school students are high in industrial zones and the use of passive samplers combined with GIS is an effective tool that may be used by public health researchers to identify pollutant zones and persons at risk.
Keywords: air pollution; industry; public health; respiratory symptoms; student’s health air pollution; industry; public health; respiratory symptoms; student’s health
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Gül, H.; Gaga, E.O.; Döğeroğlu, T.; Özden, Ö.; Ayvaz, Ö.; Özel, S.; Güngör, G. Respiratory Health Symptoms among Students Exposed to Different Levels of Air Pollution in a Turkish City. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8, 1110-1125.

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