Background: The purpose of this study was to assess patient awareness of the coronary heart disease (CHD) risks posed by air pollution.
Methods: We distributed a questionnaire to 500 patients at a University of Michigan cardiology clinic.
Results: More than half of patients (n = 264, 53%) did not believe that air pollution was "proven" or "likely" to cause CHD, whereas a similar percentage (n = 284, 57%) were not previously aware of its association with CHD. Most patients (n = 459, 92%) reported that a health care provider had not informed them of the potential CHD risks posed by air pollution nor discussed ways to lower their exposure (n = 471, 94%).
Conclusion: Patients were mostly unaware of the CHD risks posed by air pollution. These findings suggest that a serious knowledge gap exists among at-risk patients regarding this important CHD risk factor and support the need for educational efforts targeting patients and health care providers alike.
Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.