Passive cigarette smoke, coal heating, and respiratory symptoms of nonsmoking women in China

Environ Health Perspect. 1993 Sep;101(4):314-6. doi: 10.1289/ehp.93101314.


In this study we evaluated data from a sample of 973 never-smoking women, ages 20-40, who worked in three similar textile mills in Anhui Province, China. We compared prevalence rates of respiratory symptoms across homes with and without coal heating and homes with different numbers of smokers. Multiple logistic regression models that controlled for age, job title, and mill of employment were also estimated. Respiratory symptoms were associated with combined exposure to passive cigarette smoke and coal heating. Effects of passive cigarette smoke and coal heating on respiratory symptoms appeared to be nearly additive, suggesting a dose-response relationship between respiratory symptoms and home indoor air pollution from these two sources. The prevalence of chest illness, cough, phlegm, and shortness of breath (but not wheeze) was significantly elevated for women living in homes with both smokers and coal heating.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Air Pollution, Indoor / adverse effects*
  • China / epidemiology
  • Coal / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Heating / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Prevalence
  • Reference Values
  • Regression Analysis
  • Respiratory Tract Diseases / epidemiology
  • Respiratory Tract Diseases / etiology*
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / adverse effects*


  • Coal
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution