Smoking is the most well-established cause of chronic airflow obstruction (CAO) but particulate air pollution and poverty have also been implicated. We regressed sex-specific prevalence of CAO from 41 Burden of Obstructive Lung Disease study sites against smoking prevalence from the same study, the gross national income per capita and the local annual mean level of ambient particulate matter (PM 2.5) using negative binomial regression. The prevalence of CAO was not independently associated with PM 2.5 but was strongly associated with smoking and was also associated with poverty. Strengthening tobacco control and improved understanding of the link between CAO and poverty should be prioritised.
- COPD epidemiology