Fracking May Worsen Asthma For Nearby Residents

A new study says fracking may worsen asthma in children and adults who live near sites where the oil and gas drilling method is used.

The study, published Monday in JAMA Internal Medicine, found that asthma treatments were as much as four times more common in patients living closer to areas with more or bigger wells than in those living far away.

The study did not establish that fracking directly caused or worsened asthma, and it couldn't say if patients exposed to fracking fare worse than those exposed to other industrial activities.

The study was done from 2005 through 2012 in Pennsylvania when fracking activity there soared.

Fracking refers to hydraulic fracturing, a method of extracting oil and gas by injecting water, sand and chemicals into wells to crack rock.