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May 5, 1962

Air Contamination: A Respiratory Hazard

Author Affiliations

San Francisco

From the Department of Medicine, University of California School of Medicine, and the San Francisco Department of Health, San Francisco General Hospital.

JAMA. 1962;180(5):362-366. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050180008003

Health hazards due to contamination of the atmosphere are not limited to the immediate effects of severe episodes. Air pollution plays an important role in the etiology of lung cancer and is linked to cancer of other sites. It is a major cause of bronchitis and can be implicated in many other diseases of the respiratory tract. Continued study of the mechanisms involved demonstrate that these effects are not due to single factors in most situations but to multiple components differing widely from one city to another. Statistical and experimental studies of chronic exposure to common ambient levels of air pollution clearly demonstrate the serious health hazard represented by air contamination.