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Exposure-lag-response associations between weather conditions and ankylosing spondylitis: a time series study.


ABSTRACT:

Background

Patients with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) have reported that their pain becomes worse when the local weather changes. However, there is limited evidence verifying the short-term associations between meteorological factors and outpatient visits for patients with AS. Therefore, this study evaluates this possible association.

Methods

Meteorological data and data on daily AS outpatient visits to a general hospital in Hefei, China, from 2014 to 2019 were collected and analysed. Distributed lag nonlinear models and Poisson regression models were employed to determine the association between weather conditions and outpatient visits; the results were also stratified by gender and age.

Results

High relative humidity is significantly associated with all patient visits in lag 1 (RR = 1.113, 95% CI 1.021 to 1.213) and lag 7 days (RR = 1.115, 95% CI 1.014 to 1.227). A low relative risk to the nadir is observed in lag 4 days (RR = 0.920, 95% CI 0.862 to 0.983). Male and young patients (< 65 years) are more vulnerable to damp weather, and elderly people (≥ 65 years) are significantly affected by high temperatures in lag 7 days (RR = 3.004, 95% CI 1.201 to 7.510).

Conclusions

Our findings suggest a potential relationship between exposure to weather conditions and increased risk of AS outpatient visits. These results can aid hospitals in preparing for and managing hospital visits by AS patients when the local weather conditions change.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC8314534 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies