Increasing air pollution causing respiratory ailments

Updated: Feb 21, 2014, 21:18 PM IST

Zee Media Bureau

New Delhi: Air pollution has become a big menace and poses a serious threat to people's health. The ever soaring levels of air pollution have led to an increase in reports of respiratory problems in metropolitan cities like Delhi.

The particulate matter (PM) ranging from 2.5 to 10 in Delhi is higher than the levels that World Health Organisation considers safe.

Delhiites are facing breathing problems they never had and say their problem is now prolonged, said Prof Randeep Guleria, Head, Department of Pulmonary Medicine, AIIMS.

"There has been almost a 15-20 per cent rise in complaints of respiratory ailments this season. Patients who have an underlined chronic respiratory disease like Asthama and Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), when they inhale higher level of air pollutants, it leads to worsening of their respiratory status with coughing, breathlesness and many of them have to either come to the emergency or need to increase their medication," Guleria said.

Children and the elderly people are more vulnerable and prone to the harmful effects affects air pollution.

According to the Delhi Pollution Control Committee, no major changes were observed in data in the annual concentration of PM 2.5 from 2011-2013.

An official from DPCC was quoted saying: "In different stations the values ranged from 120 to 174 microgram per cubic metre (m/cum) and so the average value for Delhi is 150 m/cum. The concentration exceeds the national standards as well as the WHO guidelines.''