Study finds improved cookstove use associated with reduced blood pressure in indigenous Bolivian women
Journal of Air Quality, Atmosphere and Health: The use of biomass fuels as a primary fuel source is widespread and is linked to significant health effects. High blood pressure is a risk factor for cardiovascular effects including myocardial infarction and stroke. Few studies evaluating the health effects of household air pollution have included blood pressure measurements. This study evaluated the effects of changes in cookstove-related particulate matter on blood pressure in 28 women head-of-households pre-intervention and 1 year post-intervention of an improved cookstove in a small, indigenous community in rural Bolivia. Mean systolic blood pressure decreased from 114.5±13.0 mm Hg to 109.0± 10.4 mm Hg, (p=0.01) after the improved cookstove intervention. Small decreases in diastolic blood pressure were also seen, but these changes were not significant.