Dr. Sameer Arbat, MBBS, MDInterventional Pulmonologist at Department of PulmonologyKRIMS Hospitals, Ramdaspeth, Nagpu 

Exposure to Biomass Fuels Linked to COPD in Rural Populations

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dr. Sameer Arbat, MBBS, MDInterventional Pulmonologist at Department of PulmonologyKRIMS Hospitals, Ramdaspeth, Nagpu 

Dr. Arbat

Dr. Sameer Arbat, MBBS, MD
Interventional Pulmonologist at Department of Pulmonology
KRIMS Hospitals, Ramdaspeth, Nagpu 

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? 

Response: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is one of the major preventable chronic respiratory diseases. Worldwide chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is the third leading cause of death. A retrospective data of non-smoker COPD patients coming to our tertiary health care centre-KRIMS Hospitals, India was collected from year 2016-2018. About 180 patients were found to be non-smokers who were diagnosed as COPD on their spirometry findings.

Out of 180 non-smoker COPD patients, 54% were females. In our study 61% patients belonged to rural areas and 38% belonged to urban areas showing that rural region has higher majority of COPD patients than urban. Most people having this disease were housewives working on biomass wood smoke exposure and farmers working with toxic chemical sprays. 

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: The study shows non-smokers form an important part of COPD patients. Males and females have equal prevalence. Exposure to biomass fuel is major contributing factor and incidence is higher among rural population who are exposed to wood smoke exposure while cooking in ill-ventilated rooms. Exposure to industrial smoke, environmental pollution and household smoke are major contributors for COPD in non-smokers.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work? 

Response: There is a need to study more about this subset of non-smokers having COPD. Since the symptoms of COPD are seen many years after exposure to the culprit gases/fumes, we need to document the different forms of indoor and outdoor air pollution and work on preventive research. 

MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: Around 50% of people, almost all in developing countries, rely on coal and biomass in the form of wood, dung and crop residues for domestic energy. These materials are typically burnt in simple stoves with very incomplete combustion. Consequently, women and young children are exposed to high levels of indoor air pollution every day. WHO estimates that an alarming 90% of pollution related deaths are occuring in developing countries. There is an urgent need to highlights these threats and act on them for building a healthy world for our future generations. 

Citation:  2019 CHEST abstract


Arbat, Arbat, Agrawal, Bakamwar, Deshpande

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Last Updated on April 16, 2019 by Marie Benz MD FAAD