Temperature variability and common diseases of the elderly in China: a national cross-sectional study.
Wen B., Su BB., Xue J., Xie J., Wu Y., Chen L., Dong Y., Wu X., Wang M., Song Y., Ma J., Zheng X.
BACKGROUND: In the context of climate change, it has been well observed that short-term temperature variability (TV) could increase the overall and cause-specific mortality and morbidity. However, the association between long-term TV and a broader spectrum of diseases is not yet well understood, especially in the elderly. METHODS: Our study used data from the fourth Urban and Rural Elderly Population (UREP) study. Long-term TV was calculated from the standard deviation (SD) of daily minimum and maximum temperatures within the study periods (2010-2014, 2011-2014, 2012-2014, 2013-2014, and 2014). Ten self-reported diseases and conditions were collected by questionnaire, including cataract, hypertension, diabetes, cardio-cerebrovascular diseases, stomach diseases, arthritis, chronic lung disease, asthma, cancer, and reproductive diseases. The province-stratified logistic regression model was used to quantify the association between long-term TV and the prevalence of each disease. RESULTS: A total of 184,047 participants were included in our study. In general, there were significant associations between TV and the prevalence of most diseases at the national level. Cardio-cerebrovascular disease (OR: 1.16, 95% CI: 1.13, 1.20) generated the highest estimates, followed by stomach diseases (OR: 1.15, 95% CI: 1.10, 1.19), asthma (OR: 1.14, 95% CI: 1.06, 1.22), chronic lung diseases (OR: 1.08, 95% CI: 1.03, 1.13), arthritis (OR: 1.08, 95% CI: 1.05, 1.11), and cataract (OR: 1.06, 95% CI: 1.02, 1.10). Moreover, the associations varied by geographical regions and across subgroups stratified by sex, household income, physical activity, and education. CONCLUSIONS: Our study showed that long-term exposure to TV was associated with the prevalence of main diseases in the elderly. More attention should be paid to the elderly and targeted strategies should be implemented, such as an early warning system.