Highways, Rail Increase Kid Asthma Risk

ROCHESTER, Minn., May 10 (UPI) — U.S. researchers suggest car and rail pollutants raise a child’s risk have of developing asthma.

Researchers from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., said their data indicated those children living near major highway or railroad intersections had higher diagnoses of asthma.

“Children who lived in census tracts facing the intersection with major highways or railways had about 40 percent to 70 percent increased risk of developing childhood asthma,” Dr. Young Juhn says in a statement. “What this tells us is that clinicians need to be concerned about neighborhood environment beyond home environment to understand the individual asthma case.”

Juhn and colleagues looked at 3,970 people born between 1976 and 1979 in Rochester, Minn. Of the 1,947 subjects living in census tracts that faced intersections, 6.4 percent developed asthma, while 4.5 percent of those living in census tracts not facing intersections developed asthma.

The study is published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

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