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Consultations of children living near open-cast coal mines

Lookup NU author(s): Denise Howel, Professor Tanja Pless-Mulloli, Ross Darnell


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Because of local concerns, general practitioner consultation rates in children living in communities close to and away from open-cast mines were compared. Information on consultations was collected on 2,442 children 1-11 years of age living in five socioeconomically matched pairs of open-cast and control communities in northern England. The data collection periods were 6 weeks each during 1996-1997 and the 52-week periods preceding these weeks. Consultations were categorized as respiratory, skin and eye conditions (possibly exacerbated by particulate matter), or other conditions. Over the 6-week periods, children in 4/5 pairs of open-cast and control communities had similar consultation rates for all conditions combined [2.7 vs. 2.4 per person-year; odds ratio (OR) = 1.1; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.96-1.3). Consultations were higher in the open-cast communities for respiratory, skin, and eye conditions (2.1 vs. 1.5 per person-year; OR = 1.4; 95% CI, 1.2-1.7), and respiratory conditions alone (1.5 vs. 1.1 per person-year; OR = 1.5; 95% CI, 1.2-1.8). However, increases in consultation rates in open-cast communities were generally not seen over the portions of the 52-week periods when the open-cast sites were either active or inactive.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Pless-Mulloli T; Howel D; Darnell R

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Environmental Health Perspectives

Year: 2001

Volume: 109

Issue: 6

Pages: 567-571

Print publication date: 01/06/2001

ISSN (print): 0091-6765

ISSN (electronic): 1552-9924

Publisher: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services * National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences


DOI: 10.1289/ehp.01109567

PubMed id: 11445509


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