Effects of Air Polution on Growth in Schoolchildren

Maja Nikolić, Aleksandra Stanković, Sladjana Jović, Biljana Kocić, Dragan Bogdanović


The growth is considered a very sensitive indicator of the impact of environment of the health status of children. The aim of the study was to investigate whether air pollution is related to children’s growth. The subjects were 1059 pupils, aged 7-11 years, living for more than ten years in the same home in the city of Niš (Serbia). Exposed group of children (n=545) were attending the school located in a city area with a high level of air pollution, while the children (n=514), in the comparison group, designed as non-exposed group, were attending the school in the area with a lower level of air pollution. The air concentrations of black smoke, nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide and lead in sediment matter were determined in ten-year period. Air pollution is associated with children’s height and weight , specially before the age of 9 years. There was a significant difference in the prevalence of thinness in children exposed to higher concentrations of air pollutants (p =0.038). It might be possible that air pollution negatively contributed to the growth rate in urban children.


air pollution, children, growth, pattern

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