Role of air pollution in chronic kidney disease

A study makes an interesting retrospective on the connections between the current state of the air and a health problem which is insidious and recurring

by Lorenzo Ciotti
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Role of air pollution in chronic kidney disease

Role of air pollution in chronic kidney disease: an update on evidence, mechanisms and mitigation strategies, study published on the International archives of occupational and environmental health, makes an interesting retrospective on the connections between the current state of the air and a health problem which is insidious and recurring.

The researchers explain: "Air pollution results from a variable and complex mixture of harmful gases and suspended particles and is the most worrisome of all environmental hazards. It is implicated in several non -communicable diseases and is recognized to be a public health problem.

Though the initial exposure to air pollution is through the respiratory system, kidneys are thought to be exposed to higher concentrations owing to their filtration function.Chronic kidney disease is the insidious end result of several disease processes which cumulatively form a large healthcare burden, particularly in low - and middle-income countries." Researchers then added: "There is a growing body of evidence that air pollution may be a contributing factor that leads to CKD by not only its direct effects, but can also compound the effect of other factors/diseases causing kidney injury.

PM2. 5 exposure particularly has been implicated, although there is some evidence regarding other air pollutants as well ought to act on kidneys through several interlinked systemic pathways and mechanisms which individually and collectively damage the nephrons.

Long-term exposures seem to gradually diminish renal function and lead to end-stage renal disease. A thorough understanding of the mechanism of kidney injury is the key for formulating and implementing effective strategies for reducing this burden.

Maintaining the air quality, promoting education, improving health quality and promotion of targeted nephroprotective measures through effective policy and research support are required in addressing this global public health problem." The effects on human health due to poor air quality mainly involve the respiratory system and the cardiovascular system.

Individual reactions to air pollutants depend on the type of pollutant a person is exposed to, the degree of exposure, the individual's state of health and genetics. Indoor air pollution and poor urban air quality are listed as two of the world's worst toxic pollution problems in the 2008 report.

Outdoor air pollution causes 2.1 to 4.21 million dead every year. Collectively, air pollution causes the deaths of approximately 7 million people worldwide each year and is the largest single environmental health risk in the world.

Productivity losses and degraded quality of life caused by air pollution are estimated to cost the world economy €50 trillion per year. Various pollution control technologies and strategies are available to reduce air pollution.