Five-Year Data on Pollen Monitoring, Distribution and Health Impact of Allergenic Plants in Bucharest and the Southeastern Region of Romania.

Affiliation

Colentina Clinical Hospital, 020125 Bucharest, Romania. [Email]

Abstract

Background and objectives: Respiratory allergies induced by allergenic pollen represent an important public health problem with increasing prevalence and severity in Europe. Romania has no aerobiology network and pollen measurements have been done for about ten years in the west region only. Materials and Methods: We established the first pollen monitoring center in the capital of Bucharest in 2013, based on collaboration with the Réseau National de Surveillance Aérobiologique (RNSA) from France. The aim of our paper is to present results from five years of pollen monitoring in the city center of Bucharest and preliminary data on distribution and health impact of some allergenic plants, mainly Ambrosia artemisiifolia, which is considered a real danger for the public health. Results: Our data show a significant atmospheric amount and a longer season than previously considered of grass (Gramineae) pollen and short period with a high level of Ambrosia pollen, while tree pollen looks less important in this area. The plant distribution data provided by specialists and information from affected persons showed the wide and increasing spread of Ambrosia in Bucharest and other cities from the south region. Preliminary health data from allergists confirmed that the number of patients with allergies to Ambrosia pollen is increasing from one year to another and almost all patients describe a high urban exposure from their living or working place. Conclusions: We consider that the recently implemented Law 62/2018 against Ambrosia may help reduce weed distribution and the atmospheric pollen load, but a more complex and coordinated strategy for controlling urban vegetation and reducing biologic pollution is needed.

Keywords

Ambrosia,aerobiology,biologic pollution,pollen monitoring,respiratory allergies,