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Revista Cubana de Higiene y Epidemiología

versión impresa ISSN 0253-1751versión On-line ISSN 1561-3003

Resumen

MOLINA ESQUIVEL, Enrique  y  MENESES RUIZ, Elieza. Evaluación epidemiológica del impacto de los contaminantes del aire: Propuesta metodológica. Rev Cubana Hig Epidemiol [online]. 2003, vol.41, n.2-3. ISSN 0253-1751.

The measurement of the impact of air pollutants on health is carried out through exposure-response functions (ERFs), which allow to estimate the proportion of affected subjects in the population. The aim of the present paper is to define the methodological criteria for the determination of ERFs, to summarize the analysis of the aptitude of national epidemiological studies with this purpose and to propose a series of ERFs based on national and international evidences for their use in impact evaluations. The methodological criteria are explained in order to formulate FERs for air pollutants, starting from epidemiological studies by the determination of the concentration-response slope. It is assumed that FERs are lineal functions without threshold. The methodology adopted to evaluate the aptitude of of the studies for the establishment of FERs is exposed. The results show that several national epidemiological studies have reported associations between air pollutants and acute and chronic respiratory morbidity, eventhough only in three of them ERFs have been exposed. The main problems and limitations identified include: predominance of descriptive studies, inadequate evaluation of the exposure due to difficulties in the monitoring of pollutants, or estimates by dispersion models of uncertain accuracy and statistical evaluation with a weak epidemiological component (a mainly bivariate anlysis without control of possible confounding factors). A selection of ERFs is proposed for mortality and morbidity for its preliminary use in health impact evaluations, previous foundation of its aptitude.

Palabras clave : ATMOSPHERIC POLLUTION AND HEALTH; EPIDEMIOLOGY; RISKS EVALUATION METHODOLOGY; EXPOSURE RESPONSE FUNCTIONS; AIR POLLUTION HEALTH IMPACT.

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