Sick Neighborhood Syndromes in Hot Dry Climate

Widad Elessawi, Mady Mohamed, Mervat El-Shafie, Husam Alwaer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The neighborhood has become the focus of attraction of urban planners, designers and architects. Over the last two decades, the field of study of the neighborhood and its relationship with health has witnessed an explosion of interest. Several researchers investigated neighborhood problems and its impacts on well-being. Different urban problems vary in mental and physical health impacts. A lot of longitudinal and cross-sectional research linked the characteristic of neighborhood whether physical or social to the health condition of the community. Furthermore, heart disease, skin disorder, cancer diabetes, depression and drug use are some of the health problems that an individual might face while living in an insufficient neighborhood particularly in harsh climate conditions. In desert climate, thermal low performance can lead to urban problems such as the well-known phenomenon “Urban Heat Island (UHI)”. The later can lead to several illness syndromes for residents. Reviewing the literature revealed a gap in the knowledge on the detailed relationship between the urban design elements and the sick health syndrome. This paper discusses the negative impact of the neighborhood design elements and its interconnection with illness syndromes. Similar to the Sick Building Syndrome (SBS), the paper introduces a new term to define the relationship between the urban design elements and the sick health syndromes which is “Sick Neighborhood Syndrome” (SNS).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCities of the Future
Subtitle of host publicationChallenges and Opportunities
EditorsMady Mohamed, Asmaa Ibrahim, Mohamed Fekry
Place of PublicationSwitzerland
Number of pages30
ISBN (Electronic)9783031154607
ISBN (Print)9783031154591 (hbk), 9783031154621 (pbk)
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2 Jan 2023
EventThe 6th Annual Memaryat International Conference, MIC-VI, 2022 - Effat University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Duration: 9 Feb 202210 Feb 2022


ConferenceThe 6th Annual Memaryat International Conference, MIC-VI, 2022
Country/TerritorySaudi Arabia


  • Neighborhood
  • Health
  • Mental health
  • Physical health
  • Urban heat island
  • Neighborhood problems
  • Neighborhood design


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