Asthmatics suffer when pollen high

14 August 2012 11:09

Days when there is a high pollen count see a clear increase in the number of asthmatics visiting hospital

Days when there is a high pollen count see a clear increase in the number of asthmatics visiting hospital

Days when there is a high pollen count see a clear increase in the number of asthmatics visiting hospital emergency rooms, according to a new study.

Travellers with asthma should make sure they have medical travel insurance, especially if they're planning on a countryside retreat.

The pollens believed to be responsible for the spike in hospital visits come from oak trees and grasses, both of which increase during springtime.

The link between hayfever and asthma has been established, but there has been very little study of the relationship on a national scale.

Lyndsey Darrow, assistant professor at Emory University's Rollins School of Public Health was lead author of the new study, which analysed pollen count data collected from 1993 to 2004 from a monitoring site in Atlanta.

The study looked for links between daily pollen counts and the number of visits to the ER at 41 hospitals across Atlanta.

Extremely high pollen counts happened around six times per year, and saw a 10% increase in emergency room visitors, while days in the top 5% of oak pollen levels were linked to an increase of almost 15% in visits to the ER.

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