Respiratory disease associated with solid biomass fuel exposure in rural women and children: systematic review and meta-analysis

  • Po J
  • Fitzgerald J
  • Carlsten C
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Background Numerous studies with varying associations between domestic use of solid biomass fuels (wood, dung, crop residue, charcoal) and respiratory diseases have been reported. Objective To present the current data systematically associating use of biomass fuels with respiratory outcomes in rural women and children. Methods Systematic searches were conducted in 13 electronic databases. Data were abstracted from original articles that satisfied selection criteria for meta-analyses. Publication bias and heterogeneity of samples were tested. Studies with common diagnoses were analysed using random-effect models. Results A total of 2717 studies were identified. Fifty-one studies were selected for data extraction and 25 studies were suitable for meta-analysis. The overall pooled ORs indicate significant associations with acute respiratory infection in children (OR 3.53, 95% CI 1.94 to 6.43), chronic bronchitis in women (OR 2.52, 95% CI 1.88 to 3.38) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in women (OR 2.40, 95% CI 1.47 to 3.93). In contrast, no significant association with asthma in children or women was noted.

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  • June Y T Po

  • J Mark Fitzgerald

  • Chris Carlsten

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