Epidemiology Observatory

Bologna, Italy

Epidemiology Observatory

Bologna, Italy

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Monti M.C.,University of Pavia | Borrelli P.,University of Pavia | Nosetti L.,University of Varese | Taje S.,University of Varese | And 4 more authors.
Acta paediatrica (Oslo, Norway : 1992) | Year: 2017

AIM: Even though a standard clinical definition for an apparent life-threatening event (ALTE) was established more than two decades ago, the specific International Classification of Disease (ICD) code was firstly included only in 2012. This study estimated the incidence of ALTEs in Northern Italy, together with features and risk factors.METHODS: We used the Lombardy Region Hospital Discharge Records (HDR) database to estimate the cumulative incidence for ALTE during 2002-2006 and drew up a risk profile by comparing cases with and without ALTE who were followed in infancy.RESULTS: There were 246 infants registered in the HDR with ALTE putative diagnostic codes, suggesting a cumulative incidence of 4.1 per 1000 live births in the study area. Of the 148 cases with clinical co-morbidities, 31% had gastroesophageal reflux and 7% had acute respiratory infections. We analysed follow-up data from 15 ALTE cases and 1619 healthy infants and found that the significant risk factors were gastroesophageal reflux and a family history of sudden death.CONCLUSION: We established the regional incidence of ALTE and found risk factors in infants considered healthy in the first week of life and without pathological perinatal conditions. The systematic use of the specific ALTE ICD code (R68.13, ICD-10-CM) and common knowledge about ALTE diagnostic guidelines are clearly needed. ©2016 Foundation Acta Paediatrica. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Dominioni L.,University of Insubria | Rotolo N.,University of Insubria | Mantovani W.,University of Verona | Poli A.,University of Verona | And 7 more authors.
BMC Cancer | Year: 2012

Background: Case-control studies of mass screening for lung cancer (LC) by chest x-rays (CXR) performed in the 1990s in scarcely defined Japanese target populations indicated significant mortality reductions, but these results are yet to be confirmed in western countries. To ascertain whether CXR screening decreases LC mortality at community level, we studied a clearly defined population-based cohort of smokers invited to screening. We present here the LC detection results and the 10-year survival rates.Methods: The cohort of all smokers of > 10 pack-years resident in 50 communities of Varese, screening-eligible (n = 5,815), in July 1997 was invited to nonrandomized CXR screening. Self-selected participants (21% of cohort) underwent screening in addition to usual care; nonparticipants received usual care. The cohort was followed-up until December 2010. Kaplan-Meier LC-specific survival was estimated in participants, in nonparticipants, in the whole cohort, and in an uninvited, unscreened population (control group).Results: Over the initial 9.5 years of study, 67 LCs were diagnosed in screening participants (51% were screen-detected) and 178 in nonparticipants. The rates of stage I LC, resectability and 5-year survival were nearly twice as high in participants (32% stage I; 48% resected; 30.5% 5-year survival) as in nonparticipants (17% stage I; 27% resected; 13.5% 5-year survival). There were no bronchioloalveolar carcinomas among screen-detected cancers, and median volume doubling time of incidence screen-detected LCs was 80 days (range, 44-318), suggesting that screening overdiagnosis was minimal. The 10-year LC-specific survival was greater in screening participants than in nonparticipants (log-rank, p = 0.005), and greater in the whole cohort invited to screening than in the control group (log-rank, p = 0.001). This favourable long-term effect was independently related to CXR screening exposure.Conclusion: In the setting of CXR screening offered to a population-based cohort of smokers, screening participants who were diagnosed with LC had more frequently early-stage resectable disease and significantly enhanced long-term LC survival. These results translated into enhanced 10-year LC survival, independently related to CXR screening exposure, in the entire population-based cohort. Whether increased long-term LC-specific survival in the cohort corresponds to mortality reduction remains to be evaluated.Trial registration number: ISRCTN90639073. © 2012 Dominioni et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Colais P.,Regional Health Service | Faustini A.,Regional Health Service | Stafoggia M.,Regional Health Service | Berti G.,U.S. Environmental Protection Agency | And 9 more authors.
Epidemiology | Year: 2012

BACKGROUND: Although numerous studies have provided evidence of an association between ambient air pollution and acute cardiac morbidity, little is known regarding susceptibility factors. METHODS: We conducted a time-stratified case-crossover study in 9 Italian cities between 2001 and 2005 to estimate the short-term association between airborne particles with aerodynamic diameter <10 μm (PM10) and cardiac hospital admissions, and to identify susceptible groups. We estimated associations between daily PM10 and all cardiac diseases, acute coronary syndrome, arrhythmias and conduction disorders, and heart failure for 167,895 hospitalized subjects ≥65 years of age. Effect modification was assessed for age, sex, and a priori-defined hospital diagnoses (mainly cardiovascular and respiratory conditions) from the previous 2 years as susceptibility factors. RESULTS: The increased risk of cardiac admissions was 1.0% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.7% to 1.4%) per 10 μg/m PM10 at lag 0. The effect was slightly higher for heart failure (lag 0, 1.4% [0.7% to 2.0%]) and acute coronary syndrome (lag 0-1, 1.1% [0.4% to 1.9%]) than for arrhythmias (lag 0, 1.0% [0.2% to 1.8%]). Women were at higher risk of heart failure (2.0% [1.2% to 2.8%]; test for interaction, P = 0.022), whereas men were at higher risk of arrhythmias (1.9% [0.8% to 3.0%]; test for interaction, P = 0.020). Subjects aged 75-84 years were at higher risk of admissions for coronary events (2.6% [1.5% to 3.8%]; test for interaction, P = 0.001). None of the identified chronic conditions was a clear marker of susceptibility. CONCLUSIONS: An important effect of PM10 on hospitalizations for cardiac diseases was found in Italian cities. Sex and older age were susceptibility factors. © 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.


Dominioni L.,University of Insubria | Poli A.,University of Verona | Mantovani W.,University of Verona | Pisani S.,Epidemiology Observatory | And 6 more authors.
Lung Cancer | Year: 2013

Background: The effectiveness of screening for lung cancer (LC) in smokers on a population level, as distinct from the special circumstances that may apply in a randomized trial of selected volunteers, has not been thoroughly investigated. Here we evaluate by the standardized mortality ratio (SMR) indicator the impact of a chest X-ray (CXR) screening programme carried out at community level on LC mortality in smokers. Methods: All smokers of >10 pack-years, of both genders, ages 45-75 years, resident in 50 communities of the Province of Varese, Italy, screening-eligible, in 1997 were invited by their National Health Service (NHS) general practitioner physicians to a nonrandomized programme of five annual CXR screenings. The entire invitation-to-screen cohort (n=5815 subjects) received NHS usual care, with the addition of CXR exams in volunteer participants (21% of invitees), and was observed through December 2006. To overcome participants' selection bias of LC mortality assessment, for the entire invitation-to-screen cohort we estimated the LC-specific SMR, based on the local reference population receiving the NHS usual care. Results: Over the 8-year period 1999-2006, a total of 172 cumulative LC deaths were observed in the invitation-to-screen cohort; 210 were expected based on the reference population. Each year in the invited cohort the observed LC deaths were fewer than expected. The cumulative LC SMR was 0.82 (95%CI, 0.67-0.99; p=0.048), suggesting that LC mortality was reduced by 18% with CXR screening. Conclusion: Implementation of a CXR screening programme at community level was associated with a significant reduction of LC mortality in smokers. © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.


Samoli E.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | Rodopoulou S.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | Ostro B.,U.S. Environmental Protection Agency | Ostro B.,Center for Research in Environmental Epidemiology | And 11 more authors.
Environmental Health Perspectives | Year: 2013

Background: Few studies have investigated the independent health effects of different size fractions of particulate matter (PM) in multiple locations, especially in Europe. Objectives: We estimated the short-term effects of PM with aerodynamic diameter ≤ ; 10; μm (PM10), ≤ 2.5; μm (PM2.5), and between 2.5 and 10; μm (PM2.5-10) on all-cause, cardiovascular, and respiratory mortality in 10 European Mediterranean metropolitan areas within the MED-PARTICLES project. Methods: We analyzed data from each city using Poisson regression models, and combined city-specific estimates to derive overall effect estimates. We evaluated the sensitivity of our estimates to co-pollutant exposures and city-specific model choice, and investigated effect modification by age, sex, and season. We applied distributed lag and threshold models to investigate temporal patterns of associations. Results: A 10-μg/m3 increase in PM2.5 was associated with a 0.55% (95% CI: 0.27, 0.84%) increase in all-cause mortality (0-1 day cumulative lag), and a 1.91% increase (95% CI: 0.71, 3.12%) in respiratory mortality (0-5 day lag). In general, associations were stronger for cardiovascular and respiratory mortality than all-cause mortality, during warm versus cold months, and among those ≥ 75 versus < 75 years of age. Associations with PM2.5-10 were positive but not statistically significant in most analyses, whereas associations with PM10 seemed to be driven by PM2.5. Conclusions: We found evidence of adverse effects of PM2.5 on mortality outcomes in the European Mediterranean region. Associations with PM2.5-10 were positive but smaller in magnitude. Associations were stronger for respiratory mortality when cumulative exposures were lagged over 0-5 days, and were modified by season and age.


Stafoggia M.,Lazio Region Health Service | Samoli E.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | Alessandrini E.,Lazio Region Health Service | Cadum E.,Public Health England | And 13 more authors.
Environmental Health Perspectives | Year: 2013

Background: Evidence on the short-term effects of fine and coarse particles on morbidity in Europe is scarce and inconsistent. Objectives: We aimed to estimate the association between daily concentrations of fine and coarse particles with hospitalizations for cardiovascular and respiratory conditions in eight Southern European cities, within the MED-PARTICLES project. Methods: City-specific Poisson models were fitted to estimate associations of daily concentrations of particulate matter with aerodynamic diameter ≤ 2.5 μm (PM2.5), ≤ 10 (PM10), and their difference (PM2.5-10) with daily counts of emergency hospitalizations for cardiovascular and respiratory diseases. We derived pooled estimates from random-effects meta-analysis and evaluated the robustness of results to co-pollutant exposure adjustment and model specification. Pooled concentration-response curves were estimated using a meta-smoothing approach. Results: We found significant associations between all PM fractions and cardiovascular admissions. Increases of 10 μg/m3 in PM2.5, 6.3 μg/m3 in PM2.5-10, and 14.4 μg/m3 in PM10 (lag 0-1 days) were associated with increases in cardiovascular admissions of 0.51% (95% CI: 0.12, 0.90%), 0.46% (95% CI: 0.10, 0.82%), and 0.53% (95% CI: 0.06, 1.00%), respectively. Stronger associations were estimated for respiratory hospitalizations, ranging from 1.15% (95% CI: 0.21, 2.11%) for PM10 to 1.36% (95% CI: 0.23, 2.49) for PM2.5 (lag 0-5 days). Conclusions: PM2.5 and PM2.5-10 were positively associated with cardiovascular and respiratory admissions in eight Mediterranean cities. Information on the short-term effects of different PM fractions on morbidity in Southern Europe will be useful to inform European policies on air quality standards.


Chiusolo M.,U.S. Environmental Protection Agency | Cadum E.,U.S. Environmental Protection Agency | Stafoggia M.,Rome E Local Health Authority | Galassi C.,Cancer Epidemiology Unit | And 11 more authors.
Environmental Health Perspectives | Year: 2011

Background: Several studies have shown an association between nitrogen dioxide (NO 2) and mortality. In Italy, the EpiAir multicentric study, "Air Pollution and Health: Epidemiological Surveillance and Primary Prevention," investigated short-term health effects of air pollution, including NO 2. Objectives: To study the individual susceptibility, we evaluated the association between NO 2 and cause-specific mortality, investigating individual sociodemographic features and chronic/acute medical conditions as potential effect modifiers. Methods: We considered 276,205 natural deaths of persons > 35 years of age, resident in 10 Italian cities, and deceased between 2001 and 2005. We chose a time-stratified case-crossover analysis to evaluate the short-term effects of NO 2 on natural, cardiac, cerebrovascular, and respiratory mortality. For each subject, we collected information on sociodemographic features and hospital admissions in the previous 2 years. Fixed monitors provided daily concentrations of NO 2, particulate matter ≤ 10 μm in aerodynamic diameter (PM 10) and ozone (O 3). Results: We found statistically significant associations with a 10-μg/m 3 increase of NO 2 for natural mortality [2.09% for lag 0-5; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.96-3.24], for cardiac mortality (2.63% for lag 0-5; 95% CI, 1.53-3.75), and for respiratory mortality (3.48% for lag 1-5; 95% CI, 0.75-6.29). These associations were independent from those of PM 10 and O 3. Stronger associations were estimated for subjects with at least one hospital admission in the 2 previous years and for subjects with three or more specific chronic conditions. Some cardiovascular conditions (i.e., ischemic heart disease, pulmonary circulation impairment, heart conduction disorders, heart failure) and diabetes appeared to confer a strong susceptibility to air pollution. Conclusions: Our results suggest significant and likely independent effects of NO 2 on natural, cardiac, and respiratory mortality, particularly among subjects with specific cardiovascular preexisting chronic conditions and diabetes.


PubMed | Epidemiology Observatory, University of Pavia, University of Varese and IRCCS Instituto Auxologico Italiano
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Acta paediatrica (Oslo, Norway : 1992) | Year: 2016

Even though a standard clinical definition for an apparent life-threatening event (ALTE) was established more than two decades ago, the specific International Classification of Disease (ICD) code was firstly included only in 2012. This study estimated the incidence of ALTEs in Northern Italy, together with features and risk factors.We used the Lombardy Region Hospital Discharge Records (HDR) database to estimate the cumulative incidence for ALTE during 2002-2006 and drew up a risk profile by comparing cases with and without ALTE who were followed in infancy.There were 246 infants registered in the HDR with ALTE putative diagnostic codes, suggesting a cumulative incidence of 4.1 per 1000 live births in the study area. Of the 148 cases with clinical co-morbidities, 31% had gastroesophageal reflux and 7% had acute respiratory infections. We analysed follow-up data from 15 ALTE cases and 1619 healthy infants and found that the significant risk factors were gastroesophageal reflux and a family history of sudden death.We established the regional incidence of ALTE and found risk factors in infants considered healthy in the first week of life and without pathological perinatal conditions. The systematic use of the specific ALTE ICD code (R68.13, ICD-10-CM) and common knowledge about ALTE diagnostic guidelines are clearly needed.

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