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Abstract

A variety of climatic factors are known to influence respiratory health, usually through their impact on air quality. High temperatures, for example, are often associated with an increase in ground levels of ozone, which in turn negatively impact respiratory function (Thurston and Ito 1999; WHO 2000). In New York City, high temperatures were correlated with increased hospital admissions for both chronic airway obstruction and asthma (as well as some cardiovascular problems) (Lin et al. 2009). Humidity levels are often positively correlated with allergenic spores (e.g., Hasnain et al. 2012) and other particulates (e.g., Kulshrestha et al. 2012) and thus can trigger asthmatic attacks or other forms of respiratory distress. More recently, investigators have begun to examine the relationship between dust-sand storms and respiratory health. For example, Waness et al. (2011) cited evidence suggesting that exposure to dust-sand storms in the Middle East may contribute to pulmonary alveolar proteinosis and silicosis. In this study, we conducted a detailed correlational analysis between various climatic variables, the density of airborne particulate matter, and the incidence of hospital admissions related to respiratory problems.Inhalation of air particulates may result in serious health problems, most notably with the respiratory system. Due to a variety of factors (traffic, construction, weather patterns), the air in Doha is of poor quality and is significantly over targets for PM2.5 and PM10 (WHO, 2014 rankings). We examined the levels of particulate matter to determine if there was a daily or weekly pattern. We then compared the number of air particulates in the summer and winter and attempted to determine if small (0.5–2.5 mg/l) or large (>2.5 mg) particulate matter was related to weather patterns and resulted in increased use of the nebulizer at a local clinic. We found that particle number (both small and large) was highest around 6 am and lowest around 12 pm, a pattern that didn't change between months. The number of large and small particles was generally lower on Friday when human activity was lowest. The temperature decreased in winter while humidity increased; wind speed remained relatively constant. Data suggest that nebulizer use was higher in the winter and lower in the summer although the reasons for this are speculative. There was no relationship found between the number of people using the nebulizer and the number of air particles.

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/content/papers/10.5339/qfarc.2016.HBPP1131
2016-03-21
2020-09-19
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