Moderate increases in ambient PM2.5 and ozone are associated with lung function decreases in beach lifeguards

Ephraim I. Thaller, Sharon A. Petronella, Dan Hochman, Shawn Howard, Raj S. Chhikara, Edward G. Brooks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: Exposure to pollutants would adversely affect lung function of healthy athletes. METHODS: Pulmonary function was recorded on beach lifeguards at three different times during the day. Daily and average peak pollutant levels were calculated. Linear regression analyses were made comparing lung function changes in response to pollutant levels. A multivariate model was constructed to explain the combined effects of pollutants. RESULTS: Afternoon forced vital capacity (FVC) and forced expired volume in 1 second (FEV1) decreased significantly compared with morning values and decreased with increasing fine particulates (PM2.5). FEV1/FVC decreased with increasing ozone (O3) levels. CONCLUSION: The deleterious effect of PM2.5 and O3 were transient and occurred at pollutant levels far below national standards. At low levels of exposure, PM2.5 was associated with reduced lung volumes, while increasing O3 levels were associated with airway obstruction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)202-211
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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