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Air pollution has serious health consequences
Air pollution has already reached a harmful level in many regions. The extent of the impending impairments was made clear in a recent study. Because practically every organ is affected by the effects of air pollution.
A recent study by the University of Illinois at Chicago found that global air pollution has a detrimental effect on all human organs. Heart and lung diseases, diabetes and dementia as well as liver problems and bladder cancer are mentioned as possible diseases due to air pollution. In other words, air pollution damages every organ and every cell in the human body. The results of the study were published in the English-language journal "Chest".
More than 90 percent of the world's population suffers from air pollution
Air pollution contributes to heart and lung diseases, diabetes and dementia, as well as liver problems and bladder cancer. In addition, the polluted air also negatively affects our fertility, the health of the fetus and the general development in childhood. The World Health Organization has already described air pollution as a public health emergency. More than 90 percent of the world's population suffers from the harmful outside air. According to the researchers, air pollution causes almost 8.8 million deaths every year.
How do ultrafine particles get to our organs?
Air pollution can cause acute and chronic damage to every organ in the body, the authors of the study explain. So-called ultra-fine particles (UFP) pass through the lungs, are easily absorbed by the cells and then transported through the body via the bloodstream. In this way, they reach practically all cells in the body. It would not be surprising if every organ were really affected, the researchers report.
Children are particularly at risk
Children are particularly vulnerable to air pollution because their bodies are still developing and the lungs are atrophied by the harmful air. Air pollution not only harms your lungs, but also your heart. It also increases the risk of heart attacks as the arteries narrow and the muscles weaken. In addition, the risk of lung cancer increases.
Even skin and bones suffer from air pollution
It has also been found that even skin and bones are affected by air pollution, with skin aging, hives and brittle bones being mentioned as possible consequences. The main cause of the far-reaching damage is systemic inflammation, the authors suspect. Our immune cells think pollutant particles are a bacterium and try to kill them by releasing enzymes and acids. Concern was also expressed that many doctors are unaware of the far-reaching damage that air pollution can cause. Many seem to have no idea that the increasing air pollution damages the organs they specialize in, the researchers report. (as)