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As DelhiĀ air pollution rose, so did arthritis cases, says AIIMS


NEW DELHI: As air pollution in the national capital shot up over the past one week, prompting the government to enforce emergency measures, cases of arthritis rose by almost 30 per cent, the All India Institute of Medical Sciences has claimed.

Uma Kumar, professor and head of the department of Rheumatology Medicine at AIIMS, said the footfall of patients diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis or under medication for the condition increased post Diwali.

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“We found that even the patients under treatment and those who had been cured, visited us over the last seven days complaining of aggravated pain and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. There were some fresh cases as well,” Kumar told this newspaper.

She said in November and December, when the concentration of suspended particulate matter (SPM) 2.5 in the atmosphere increases, the patients report joint pain and swelling. “In the long term, the patients are at a higher risk of getting auto-immunised to the disease,” she said.