Special Issue on Air Pollution and its Impact in South and Southeast Asia (II)

Khyati M. Kakkad1, Chirantap Oza This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.1, Priya Dutta2, Varsha Chorsiya  3, Prashant Rajput  4 

1 A.M.C Medical Education Trust Medical College and LG hospital, Ahmedabad 380008, India
2 Indian Institute of Public Health Gandhinagar 382042, India
3 School of Physiotherapy, Delhi Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research University, New Delhi 110017, India
4 Centre for Environmental Health, Public Health Foundation of India, Gurugram 122002, India

Received: January 24, 2022
Revised: March 28, 2022
Accepted: April 17, 2022

 Copyright The Author(s). This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are cited.

Download Citation: ||https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.220038  

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Cite this article:

Kakkad, K.M., Oza, C., Dutta, P., Chorsiya, V., Rajput, P. (2022). Linking PM Pollution to the Respiratory Health of Children: A Cross-sectional Study from Ahmedabad City in Western India. Aerosol Air Qual. Res. 22, 220038. https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.220038


  • Assessed effect of acute exposure to urban PM2.5 on respiratory health of children under 6.
  • Respiratory health effects due to PM2.5 were studied using WHO/Europe’s AirQ+ tool.
  • Relative risk of hospital admissions was relatively high during winter (1.16) and post-monsoon/summer (1.15).
  • Number of attributable cases per 100,000 population at risk varied from 24.98 in monsoon to 45.45 in winter.


Worldwide research on public health suggests that air pollution (AP) has deleterious human health impacts. Children living in developing countries suffer a double burden of respiratory diseases. The present study aims to find out the risk of short-term exposure to PM2.5 on respiratory admissions of children under 6 from Ahmedabad city in western India. A cross-section observational study of all patients, under 6, with respiratory illnesses admitted in the Pediatric ward from 1st November 2017‒31st December 2018 at a tertiary care hospital in Ahmedabad has been conducted to decipher the seasonal impact of PM2.5 on respiratory admissions. During the study period, respiratory illnesses accounted for 21.2% of the total admissions−60.6% were male, 48.4% were of infant age, 60.1% of the patients were suffering from wheezing disorders while 39.9% had infective disorders. The relative risk (RR) and the number of attributable cases per 100,000 children population at risk were estimated due to short-term exposure to PM2.5 for different seasons in Ahmedabad city applying a log-linear integrated exposure-response function in WHO/Europe’s AirQ+ tool using national census-2011 city-level population of children and United Nation’s annual growth-rate, baseline incidence, PM2.5 pollution profile, WHO’s updated counterfactual value for short-term PM2.5 exposure (= 15 µg m3). Accordingly, the RR for the number of respiratory admissions of children due to ambient levels of PM2.5 in winter was 1.16 (95% CI: 1.09−1.23), in summer was 1.15 (95% CI: 1.09−1.21), in monsoon was 1.08 (95% CI: 1.03−1.13) and in post-monsoon was 1.15 (95% CI: 1.07−1.23). The number of attributable cases (along with confidence interval: CI), per 100,000 population of children under 6 at risk, was 45 (95% CI: 21‒68) in winter, 41 (95% CI: 19‒63) in summer, 25 (95% CI: 11‒39) in monsoon, and 42 (95% CI: 18‒66) in the post-monsoon season.

Keywords: Air pollution, PM2.5, AirQ+, Respiratory admissions, India

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