Pornpun Sakunkoo This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.1,2, Chananya Jirapornkul1,3, Naowarat Maneenin1,3, Yuparat Limmongkon1,2, Jetnapis Rayubkul1,4, Kittipong Sornlorm4, Rajitra Nawawonganun  4 

1 Research Group in Occupational Health and Safety and Environmental Epidemiology (OHSEE-PH), Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen, Thailand
2 Department of Environmental Health Occupational Health and Safety, Faculty of Public Health, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen, Thailand
3 Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Faculty of Public Health, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen, Thailand
4 Central Affiliation, Faculty of Public Health, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen, Thailand

Received: December 21, 2023
Revised: April 25, 2024
Accepted: May 17, 2024

 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.

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Sakunkoo, P., Jirapornkul, C., Maneenin, N., Limmongkon, Y., Rayubkul, J., Sornlorm, K., Nawawonganun, R. (2024). The Association between Short-Term PM2.5 Exposure and Long COVID on the Respiratory System. Aerosol Air Qual. Res. 24, 230302.


  • Exposure to PM2.5 during COVID-19 infection affects Long-COVID.
  • People who live in urban areas are at a higher risk of Long-COVID.
  • There is no significant association found between vaccination and Long-COVID.


Long COVID is an emerging medical condition defined by continuing symptoms reported by those who had previously recovered from COVID-19. The aforementioned symptoms impose significant effects on several physiological systems, especially the respiratory system. During the COVID-19 pandemic, several countries, including Thailand, encountered the issue of PM2.5 pollution, which has had adverse effects on human health. This study was to evaluate the impact of short-term exposure to PM2.5 on the respiratory system and its correlation with the prevalence of Long COVID, while also examining the relevant factors, particularly the presence of PM2.5 exposure. This Cross-Sectional analytical study was conducted with 694 participants who had recovered from COVID-19 in the northeast of Thailand. A generalized linear mixed model was used to identify the associations. It was found that the prevalence of Long COVID on the respiratory system: participants exposed to PM2.5 at 26–37 µg m–3. had an increased risk of developing Long COVID on the respiratory system at 50.54% (95% CI: 40.20–60.84), exposure to PM2.5 ≥ 1 hour per day (AOR = 1.84, 95% CI: 1.33–2.55, lived in urban areas (AOR: 1.64, 95% CI: 1.13–2.37), not wore a face mask to prevent PM2.5 exposure (AOR: 1.78, 95% CI: 1.25–2.54), female (AOR: 1.51, 95% CI: 1.05–2.18), farmer (AOR: 5.78, 95% CI: 1.05–2.18). The risk of exposure to PM2.5 is still at a level that affects health, and also affects Long COVID in many systems, especially the respiratory system. Therefore, risk groups and relevant agencies should use the study results as a prevention guideline to reduce the risk that may occur in each aspect of health. And there should be a process to prevent the risk of PM2.5 exposure.

Keywords: Long COVID, Post-COVID, Short-term exposure to PM2.5, Air pollution

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