Tiny air pollution particles – like the very ones in bushfire smoke swathing NSW – are doing more than aggravating the lungs of asthmatics. Even short term exposure to the particulate PM2.5 is sending people to hospital for a multitude of newly identified reasons including sepsis and urinary tract infections.

Every 0.001 part-per-million of PM2.5 in the air is linked to 2050 extra hospital admissions, 12,216 days in hospital and almost $46 million in healthcare costs for conditions including lung diseases, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and diabetes, a US study published on Thursday in the BMJ found.

 

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Photo credit:  John Newman, from the interagency [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons