Exercising Responses are Harmed More in Healthy People Than in Ex-smokers Due to Air Pollution

According to a new study, traffic-related air pollution (TRAP) affects exercise responses in healthy people but not in former smokers with or without chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Exercising Responses are Harmed More in Healthy People Than in Ex-smokers Due to Air Pollution
Photo: Air Pollution | InStyleHealth


Researchers looked at whether pre-exercise exposure to TRAP (diesel exhaust [DE]300: fine particulate matter [PM2.5] 300 μg/m3) had an adverse effect on exercise endurance, exertional dyspnea, and cardiorespiratory responses to exercise, and whether the magnitude of the effect was greater in participants with mild-to-moderate COPD (n=9) compared to former smokers with normal spirometry (n=9) and healthy never-smokers (controls, n=11).

The participants in this double-blind, randomized, crossover trial were exposed to filtered air (FA) and DE300 for 2 hours each, separated by at least 4 weeks. The subjects underwent symptom-limited constant load cycling tests with thorough cardiorespiratory and exertional symptom measures after 2.5 hours of exposure.

TRAP had a significant detrimental effect on exercise endurance duration in healthy controls (DE300 vs FA: 10.2 vs 12.9 min, respectively; p=0.03), but not in ex-smokers without COPD (10.1 vs 12.2 min, respectively; p=0.57) or ex-smokers with COPD (9.8 vs 8.4 min, respectively; p=0.31).

Furthermore, there were significant increases in inspiratory duty cycle, absolute end-expiratory and end-inspiratory lung volumes, and dyspnea ratings were high at submaximal measurement durations, but only in healthy controls.

 

Source: Chest 2021;doi:10.1016/j.chest.2021.10.020

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