Serial correlation and confounders in time-series air pollution studies

Bin B Jalaludin, Guy B Marks and Geoffrey G Morgan
Med J Aust 2002; 177 (7): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2002.tb04853.x
Published online: 7 October 2002

To the Editor: The recent article by Johnston et al is an important contribution to the small but growing body of literature on the health effects of particulate matter (PM) pollution derived from bush or forest fire.1 The authors studied an important wood smoke PM exposure in Australia and showed consistent associations between higher concentrations of PM and emergency department presentations for asthma. Most research on the effects of PM has focused on motor-vehicle-derived PM pollution.2,3


  • 1. Johnston FH, Kavanagh AM, Bowman DMJS, Scott RK. Exposure to bushfire smoke and asthma: an ecological study. Med J Aust 2002; 176: 535-538. <eMJA full text>
  • 2. Kunzli N, Kaiser R, Medina S, et al. Public-health impact of outdoor and traffic-related air pollution: a European assessment. Lancet 2000; 356: 795-801.
  • 3. Pope CA, III. Epidemiology of fine particulate air pollution and human health: biologic mechanisms and who's at risk? Environ Health Perspect 2000; 108: 713-723.
  • 4. Schwartz J, Spix C, Touloumi G, et al. Methodological issues in studies of air pollution and daily counts of deaths or hospital admissions. J Epidemiol Community Health 1996; 50: S3-S11.
  • 5. Storr J, Lenney W. School holidays and admissions with asthma. Arch Dis Child 1989; 64: 103-107.


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