Road traffic noise and cardiovascular disease risk factors in UK Biobank.

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The aim of this study was to investigate the cross-sectional associations of modelled residential road traffic noise with cardiovascular disease risk factors [systolic (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP), C-reactive protein, triglycerides, glycated haemoglobin, and self-reported hypertension] in UK Biobank.The UK Biobank recruited 502 651 individuals aged 40-69 years across the UK during 2006-10. Road traffic noise (Lden and Lnight) exposure for 2009 was estimated at baseline address using a simplified version of the Common Noise Assessment Methods model. We used multivariable linear and logistic regression models, adjusting for age, sex, body mass index (BMI), smoking, alcohol intake, area- and individual-level deprivation, season of blood draw, length of time at residence, and nitrogen dioxide (main model), in an analytical sample size of over 370 000 participants. Exposure to road-traffic Lden >65 dB[A], as compared to ≤55 dB[A], was associated with 0.77% [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.60%, 0.95%], 0.49% (95% CI 0.32%, 0.65%), 0.79% (95% CI 0.11%, 1.47%), and 0.12% (95% CI -0.04%, 0.28%) higher SBP, DBP, triglycerides, and glycated haemoglobin, respectively. Removing BMI from the main model yielded significant positive associations with all five markers with elevated percent changes. The associations with SBP or DBP did not appear to be impacted by hypertension medication while a positive association with prevalent self-reported hypertension was seen in the non-medicated group who exposed to a Lden level of 60-65 dB[A] (odds ratio 1.07, 95% CI 1.00, 1.15).Exposure to road traffic noise >65 dB[A], independent of nitrogen dioxide, was associated with small but adverse changes in blood pressure and cardiovascular biochemistry.

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Authors: Zuzana Kupcikova, Daniela Fecht, Rema Ramakrishnan, Charlotte Clark, Yutong Samuel Cai