Studies on respiratory illness and lung function

Roberto J. Rona and Susan Chinn

in The National Study of Health and Growth

Published in print July 1999 | ISBN: 9780192629197
Published online September 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780191723612 | DOI:
Studies on respiratory illness and lung function

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Respiratory illnesses were more common in white inner-city children and Afro–Caribbean children than white children, based on the representative sample. This chapter summarizes the findings. Children from the Indian subcontinent had the highest prevalence of exercise-induced bronchial responsiveness but low prevalence of illness, suggesting parental underreporting of respiratory symptoms. FEV1 and FVC were lower in Afro–Caribbean children and those from the Indian subcontinent than in white children. Low birthweight was associated with low lung function and gestational age was related to wheezing. Height was associated with persistent wheezing which was unexplained by steroid use. The chapter reported an association between weight and asthma in the 1980s, but this association appeared relatively recently, as it did not exist in the 1977 survey. Sibship size, more than birth order, was negatively associated with asthma. The chapter also demonstrates that poverty was highly associated with persistent wheezing and that the management of asthma in children was poor in inner-city areas.

Keywords: birthweight; ethnic group; FEV1; height; number of siblings; management of asthma; obesity; severity; wheezing

Chapter.  4756 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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