DMS studies case of woman with severe reaction to air pollution

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DMS Director-General Dr. Somsak Akkasilp.
DMS Director-General Dr. Somsak Akkasilp.

Bangkok – The Department of Medical Services (DMS) has indicated that one woman’s severe reaction to air pollution was uncommon, and was likely due to her impaired immune system.

DMS Director-General Dr. Somsak Akkasilp acknowledged that it is likely high concentrations of particulate matter or PM 2.5 in the air at this time may cause allergic reactions, especially to the skin, which is most exposed to the pollution. Director of the Institute of Dermatology Dr. Mingkwan Wichaidit echoed the statement by saying that PM 2.5 does pose short and long term threats to the skin, urging citizens to limit their exposure. DMS has nevertheless responded to news of one woman having a severe reaction to high PM 2.5 levels by saying that she was already suffering from a weakened immune system and was particularly susceptible to detrimental effects from the air pollution situation.

Permanent Secretary for Public Health, Dr. Sukum Kanchanapimai assured the public that the ministry is closely following the air pollution situation in Bangkok and its vicinity and providing guidance to at-risk citizens in schools and department stores. A rapid response team has also been dispatched to monitor those suffering from asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and acute heart failure.

Citizens are being urged to avoid outdoor activity, to wear face masks when outside and to seek medical attention if they experience frequent coughs or dizziness. A hotline is available at 1422.