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Title of Journal: Int J Biometeorol

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Abbravation: International Journal of Biometeorology

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Springer Berlin Heidelberg

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An analysis of heat effects in different subpopulations of Bangladesh

Authors: Katrin Burkart, Susanne Breitner, Alexandra Schneider, Md. Mobarak Hossain Khan, Alexander Krämer, Wilfried Endlicher,

Publish Date: 2013/05/21
Volume: 58, Issue:2, Pages: 227-237
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A substantial number of epidemiological studies have demonstrated an association between atmospheric conditions and human all-cause as well as cause-specific mortality. However, most research has been performed in industrialised countries, whereas little is known about the atmosphere–mortality relationship in developing countries. Especially with regard to modifications from non-atmospheric conditions and intra-population differences, there is a substantial research deficit. Within the scope of this study, we aimed to investigate the effects of heat in a multi-stratified manner, distinguishing by the cause of death, age, gender, location and socio-economic status. We examined 22,840 death counts using semi-parametric Poisson regression models, adjusting for a multitude of potential confounders. Although Bangladesh is dominated by an increase of mortality with decreasing (equivalent) temperatures over a wide range of values, the findings demonstrated the existence of partly strong heat effects at the upper end of the temperature distribution. Moreover, the study demonstrated that the strength of these heat effects varied considerably over the investigated subgroups. The adverse effects of heat were particularly pronounced for males and the elderly above 65 years. Moreover, we found increased adverse effects of heat for urban areas and for areas with a high socio-economic status. The increase in, and acceleration of, urbanisation in Bangladesh, as well as the rapid aging of the population and the increase in non-communicable diseases, suggest that the relevance of heat-related mortality might increase further. Considering rising global temperatures, the adverse effects of heat might be further aggravated.



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