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Temperature Effects on Hospital Admissions for Cardiovascular and Respiratory Problems in Greece
Reference
Bartzokas, A., Kassomenos, P., Petrakis, M. and Celessides, C.  2004.  The effect of meteorological and pollution parameters on the frequency of hospital admissions for cardiovascular and respiratory problems in Athens.  Indoor and Build Environment 13: 271-275.

Background
With respect to both cardiovascular and respiratory health problems, the vast majority of pertinent studies have found that colder temperatures are much more detrimental than are warmer temperatures [see Health Effects (Temperature - Cardiovascular and Respiratory) in our Subject Index].

What was done
The authors say they "examined the relationship between hospital admissions for cardiovascular (cardiac in general including heart attacks) and/or respiratory diseases (asthma etc.) in a major hospital in Athens and meteorological parameters for an 8-year period."

What was learned
Bartzokas et al. report that, over the whole year, "there was a dependence of admissions on temperature," and that low temperatures were "responsible for a higher number of admissions."  Specifically, they say "there was a decrease of cardiovascular or/and respiratory events from low to high values [of temperature], except for the highest temperature class in which a slight increase was recorded."

What it means
As has been found in almost all studies that have previously addressed the question of temperature effects on cardiovascular and respiratory health problems, this study finds, for both problems, that colder temperatures are far more to be feared than are warmer temperatures.


Reviewed 15 December 2004