The presence of several pollutants in the air increases the risk of cardiac arrest, Italian doctors from the San Mateo Polyclinic have found. They spoke about the danger at the Congress of the European Society of Cardiology.
It was previously known that air pollution is a potential risk factor for cardiac arrest, but there has been little study of its association with specific substances. To understand the issue, the researchers collected data on the daily incidence of cardiac arrest in 2019 in several Italian provinces and compared it with information on the daily concentrations of various substances in the air in the study area.
In total, the researchers found 1582 community-acquired cardiac arrests. They more often occurred on days when the concentration of particulate matter (PM10, PM2.5), nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, benzene and sulfur dioxide was significantly increased in the air. The stronger the changes were, the more cases of cardiac arrest were observed. The likelihood also increased with decreasing temperatures. In addition, the researchers found an inverse relationship in the case of ozone - the more it was in the air, the less often cardiac arrest occurred.
The researchers propose using the data obtained to predict the frequency of cardiac arrest in different regions based on monitoring the composition of the air - this will improve the efficiency of medical services. Also, when working with patients, doctors should take this factor into account when assessing the risks of developing cardiovascular diseases.