Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons Linked to Rheumatoid Arthritis

After accounting for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon body burden, smoking not associated with rheumatoid arthritis
ra rheumatoid arthritis hands pain
ra rheumatoid arthritis hands painAdobe Stock
Medically Reviewed By:
Mark Arredondo, M.D.

WEDNESDAY, May 10, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are associated with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), according to a study published online May 9 in BMJ Open.

Michelle Beidelschies, Ph.D., from the Cleveland Clinic, and colleagues conducted a cross-sectional study using the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2007 to 2016 to examine the associations between environmental toxicants and RA among adults in the U.S. general population. Data were included for 21,987 adults: 20,569 without RA and 1,418 with RA.

The researchers found that participants with the highest quartile of various individual PAHs had an increased prevalence of RA, but the association only remained significant for 1-hydroxynaphthalene in a fully adjusted model (odds ratio, 1.8). In a fully adjusted model, PAH body burden was associated with RA (quartile 4 versus 1: odds ratio, 2.2). Smoking was not associated with RA after accounting for PAH body burden. PAH body burden accounted for 90 percent of the total effect of smoking on RA in a mediation analysis. In fully adjusted models, phthalates and plasticizers metabolites or volatile organic compounds were not found to be associated with RA.

"The current study supports and expands the available evidence demonstrating that environmental PAHs are associated with RA prevalence in the U.S. population, regardless of smoking status," the authors write.

Abstract/Full Text

Related Stories

No stories found.