The meteorological sensitivity of ischaemic heart disease mortality events in BIrmingham, UK

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Winter ischaemic heart disease (IHD) mortality events (ME) were identified in order to establish their degree of meteorological sensitivity. Sensitivity was evaluated using regression of surface meteorological and large-scale atmospheric circulation variables on daily mortality for each mortality event. Critical meteorological variables affecting IHD mortality appear to be local surface dry-bulb and dew-point temperature and large-scale southerly and westerly wind components, atmospheric pressure and vorticity. The rate of change and departure from normal conditions of these variables appear to be especially important for engendering IHD mortality events. Associated with IHD mortality are two broad types of weather conditions: (1) blustery westerly flows and rapidly changing weather from the west and (2) climatologically strong northeasterly to southeasterly flows of cold air, which bring rapidly changing and anomalous thermal conditions to the study area. The general atmospheric circulation patterns that produce these conditions are identified and the implications of results for weather and health studies are discussed.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-142
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Biometeorology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2001