Canadian scientists claim that high levels of pollution could increase the risk of appendicitis in adults. The finding was presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Gastroenterology in Orlando (Florida, USA).

“The release of some cases of appendicitis would be the exposure to air pollutants. It is the first time that describes a relationship between the air we breath and the incidence of appendicitis, “noted Dr. G. Gilaad Kaplan of the University of Calgary and lead author of the study.

His team identified more than 5,000 patients older than 18 who were hospitalized between 1999 and 2006. It was determined the level of exposure to air pollution before hospitalization result of the data from the National Monitoring Program of Environment Canada, which uses sentinel stations to record levels of ozone, nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide and carbon particles of various sizes. These records are made every hour.

“There was a slight increase in the risk of hospitalization for appendicitis when concentrations of ozone and nitrogen dioxide were high in the atmosphere,” said Kaplan. “The rates of appendicitis in developing countries are quite low, but as these countries are industrializing we began to see the emergence of the disease,” he said.

Appendicitis was first described in 1886, but are unknown his pathogenesis. If other studies confirm the results found in this, it would explain “the pathogenesis of appendicitis and will demonstrate the need to monitor air quality as a preventive measure,” says the Canadian team.

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