Small is deadly

Published: Tuesday 15 June 1999

Long-term exposure to atmospheric particles less than 10 microgrammes in diameter (PM10s) can increase chances of lung cancer in men, says a new study. David Abbey and his team from Loma Lind University, California, USA, monitored 6,338 non-smoking Caucasians between the ages of 27 and 95 years who lived in California between 1967 and 1992. All participants filled up a lifestyle questionnaire and participated in follow-ups in 1977, 1987 and 1992. In men, PM10 was strongly associated with lung cancer. Abbey explains the difference between men and women as partly due to the amount of time spent outdoors, which increases the risk ( American Journal of Critical Care Medicine , Vol 159 No. 2).

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