Air pollution exposure in early pregnancy linked to miscarriage, NIH study suggests
Ozone is a highly reactive form of oxygen that is a primary constituent of urban smog.
Exposure to common air pollutants, such as ozone and fine particles, may increase the risk of early pregnancy loss, according to a study conducted by the National Institutes of Health and led by Pauline Mendola, Ph.D., an investigator at NIH’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). The study appears in the journal Fertility and Sterility.
Ozone is a highly reactive form of oxygen that is a primary constituent of urban smog. Researchers followed 501 couples attempting to conceive between 2005 and 2009 in Michigan and Texas. The investigators estimated the couples’ exposures to ozone based on pollution levels in their residential communities. Of the 343 couples who achieved pregnancy, 97 (28 percent) experienced an early pregnancy loss — all before 18 weeks. Couples with higher exposure to ozone were 12 percent more likely to experience an early pregnancy loss, whereas couples exposed to particulate matter (small particles and droplets in the air) were 13 percent more likely to experience a loss.
This page was last updated on Friday, January 21, 2022