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Korean Journal of Epidemiology 1991;13(2): 159-168.
Out-patient visits for respiratory diseases and yellow sand phenomena.
Seok Lee, Young Wook Lim, Yong Chung
Abstract
This study was performed to assessed the association between out-patients visits for respiratory diseases(ICD 460-493) and Yellow sand phenomena by the proportion of out-patient visits for respiratory disease to all diseases in three clinical departments - internal medicine, paediatrics, ENT. The proportin was acquired by analysing one data sets ; comparison among pre-Yellow sand phenomena period, Yellow sand phenomena period and post-Yellow sand phenomena period in 1988. The number of subjects of the comparison among periods were 6,793 out-patients in 1988 from one hospital in Seoul during 5 weeks, the first week being the period of pre-Yellow sand phenomena (4.11-4.16), the second week, Yellow sand phenomena (4.8-4.23), the third week, post-Yellow sand phenomena stage 1(4.25-4.30), the forth week, post-Yellow sand phenomena stage 2(5.2-5.7), and the fifth week, post-Yollow sand phenomena stage 3(5.9-514). The results of this study were as follows ; 1. The proportions of out-patient visits for respiratory disease to total visits were 11.6% during pre-Yellow sand phenomena period, 19.8% in Yellow sand phenomena period, 16.6% in post-Yellow sand phenomena period 1, 21.4% in post-Yellow sand phenomena period 2, and 11.8% in post-Yellow sand phenomena period 3. In the periodical comparison, the most frequent disease was acute upper respiratory infections of multiple or unspecified site (ICD 465) during all periods, and the change in the proportions of that disease by period was the same as the change in the ratios of total respiratory diseases. 2. The ratio of out-patient visits by men to those by women during all periods was 1.3, but the ratio was reversed in period of Yellow sand phenomena and post-Yellow sand phenomena period 1 and 2. 3. Susceptable age groups, who showed an increase in out-patient visits for respiratory disease during Yellow sand phenomena were ages of 0-9 and ages of 50 or over. In these age groups, the proportions of out-patient visits for respiratory disease to total visits in the periods of Yellow sand phenomena and post-Yellow sand phenomena period 1 and 2 were 1.5-1.7 times the proportions in the period of pre-Yellow sand phenomena. This study has some limitations. Instead of the number of incidences of respiratory disease, out-patient visits were used for the analysis. The interpretations of results might be limited in consideration of the differences between medical care utilization and incidences of respiratory disease. The proportion of out-patient visits for respiatory disease to total visits was increased by the Yellow sand phenonmena. However this study could not definitely conclude that Yellow sand phenomena had a direct relationship with increasing incidence of respiratory diseases.
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