Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Pollution’s Link to Birth Weight

News Brief by Kelsey Davenport

Researchers have found a correlation between pollution and birth weight.  According to studies spanning nine countries and over three million births, exposure to pollution is dangerous for expecting mothers.  The odds of having a baby born at a below average weight increases with exposure to air pollution. Particulate matter with a diameter of less than ten micrometers could be a risk factor for pregnant women.  The risk of a low birth weight increased ten to fifteen percent in locations with more polluted air, signifying a noteworthy correlation.
Although a low birth weight does not necessarily cause lasting damage, it can be an indicator for future health problems, such as heart disease and diabetes.  Additionally, low birth weight is a leading cause of premature mortality.  These findings have serious public health implications, and will need to be thoroughly verified.

Reference: Bakalar , Nicholas. "Pollution's Link to Birth Weight." New York Times 11 Feb 2013, D4. Web. 19 Feb. 2013. .
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