Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Seasonal variation of effect of air pollution on blood pressure
  1. Ji-Ho Choi1,
  2. Qing-Song Xu2,
  3. So-Yeon Park3,
  4. Jin-Hee Kim3,
  5. Seung-Sik Hwang3,
  6. Kwan-Hee Lee5,
  7. Hyun-Jung Lee6,
  8. Yun-Chul Hong4
  1. 1Department of Family Medicine, Inha University College of Medicine, Incheon, South Korea
  2. 2Department of Functional Medicine, Yanbian University Medical College, Yanji, China
  3. 3Department of Preventive Medicine, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, South Korea
  4. 4Institute of Environmental Health, SNUMRC, Seoul, South Korea
  5. 5Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Inha University Hospital, Incheon, South Korea
  6. 6Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Seoul National University School of Public Health, Seoul, South Korea
  1. Correspondence to:
 Professor Y-C Hong
 Department of Preventive Medicine, Seoul National University College of Medicine, 28 Yongon-Dong, Chongno-Gu, Seoul 110-799, South Korea; ychong1{at}


Background: Many studies have shown a consistent association between ambient air pollution and an increase in death due to cardiovascular causes. An increase in blood pressure is a common risk factor for a variety of cardiovascular diseases. However, the association between air pollution and blood pressure has not been evaluated extensively.

Methods: In this cross-sectional study, we measured blood pressure in 10 459 subjects who had a health examination from 2001 to 2003, and calculated individual’s exposure to ambient levels of air pollutants. To evaluate the relationship between exposure to air pollutants and blood pressure with respect to season, we performed a multiple regression analysis, separately, according to season, controlling for individual characteristics and meteorological variables.

Results: In the warm-weather season (July–September), particulate air pollutant of <10 μm (PM10) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) concentrations were significantly associated with measures of blood pressure. During cold weather (October–December), blood pressure was significantly associated with sulphur dioxide (SO2) and ozone (O3) concentrations. The significant association between PM10 or NO2 and blood pressure disappeared during the cold-weather season.

Conclusion: We found a seasonal variation for the association between ambient air-pollutant concentrations and blood pressure.

  • PM2.5, particulate air pollutant of <2.5 μm diameter
  • PM10, particulate air pollutant of <10 μm diameter

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


  • Funding: This study was supported by Ecotechnopia 21 Project of Ministry of Environment, South Korea.

  • Competing interests: None declared.

Linked Articles

  • In this issue
    Carlos Alvarez-Dardet John R Ashton