[Article in French]
Cartieaux E, Rzepka MA, Cuny D. Arch Pediatr. 2011 May 27. [Epub ahead of print]
Institut lillois d'ingénierie de la santé, 42, rue Ambroise-Paré, 59120 Loos, France.
Indoor air quality in schools has received particular attention over the past several years. Children are considered as one of the most sensitive groups to atmospheric pollution because their bodies are actively growing and they breathe higher volumes of air relative to their body weights than adults do. They also spend more time in school or group structures (preschools, day nurseries) than in any indoor environments other than the home. The analysis of children's exposure to air pollution at school requires the identification of the main pollutant sources present in these educational institutions. Both a strong contribution of outdoor pollution and a very specific pollution bound to school activities such as the use of paints, markers, glues, and manufactured ink eraser pens, exist. The ventilation in school buildings also plays an important role in air quality. A higher air exchange may improve thermal comfort and air quality. The cause of indoor air pollution is a combinatory effect of physical, chemical, and biological factors, and the adequacy of ventilation in the environment. Several pollutants have been reported to exist in classrooms such as bacteria, molds, volatile organic compounds, persistent organic pollutants and microparticles. There is a correlation between the concentrations of the pollutants and onset of health problems in schoolchildren. We observe predominantly respiratory symptoms as well as a prevalence of respiratory diseases such as asthma and allergies. This study shows that poor indoor air quality affects children's health.
PMID: 21621987 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]