Childhood asthma hospitalization and residential exposure to state route traffic

Environ Res. 2002 Feb;88(2):73-81. doi: 10.1006/enrs.2001.4303.


This study investigated whether pediatric hospitalization for asthma was related to living near a road with heavy traffic. In this case-control study, cases (N=417) consisted of white children aged 0-14 years who were admitted for asthma and who resided in Erie County, New York, excluding the city of Buffalo. Controls (N=461) were children in the same age range admitted during the same time period for nonrespiratory diseases. Subjects' residential addresses were linked to traffic information provided by the New York State Department of Transportation. After adjustments for age and poverty level were made, children hospitalized for asthma were more likely to live on roads with the highest tertile of vehicle miles traveled (VMT) (odds ratio (OR): 1.93, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.13-3.29) within 200 m and were more likely to have trucks and trailers passing by within 200 m of their residence (OR=1.43, 95% CI: 1.03-1.99) compared to controls. However, childhood asthma hospitalization was not significantly associated with residential distance from state roads, annual VMT within 500 m, or whether trucks or trailers passed by within 500 m. This study suggests that exposure to high volumes of traffic/truck within 200 m of homes contributes to childhood asthma hospitalizations.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Asthma / epidemiology
  • Asthma / etiology*
  • Asthma / therapy
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Child Welfare
  • Child, Preschool
  • Environmental Exposure*
  • Female
  • Hospitalization*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Motor Vehicles
  • New York / epidemiology
  • Vehicle Emissions / adverse effects*


  • Vehicle Emissions