PM Effects on the Human Respiratory Tract

The respiratory tract serves as a target organ and portal of entry for pollutants that may cause disease in other organs. For example, changes in the respiratory tract may have a cascading effect on cardiac function.

There is a substantial impact of respiratory conditions on U.S. society:
Most respiratory and heart diseases occur in smokers. PM is thought to alter the prevalence of death due to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and cardiac disease. Therefore, the effects of PM on these diseases are manifest largely in smokers.

Respiratory system of a normal adult:

Anatomy of the Respiratory System

Go to Air Quality Table of Contents