PD05 - Asthma and allergy from infancy into school age – the allergic march revisited
© Goksör et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2014
Published: 28 February 2014
The allergic march describes a proposed natural course of allergic disease during childhood. However, different patterns of allergic morbidity have been suggested. The aim of this study was to describe the prevalence of doctor-diagnosed asthma and allergic manifestations from infancy into school age and the relationship between early manifestations and the prevalence of asthma at school age.
Data were obtained from a prospective, longitudinal study of a cohort of children born in western Sweden. The parents answered questionnaires at 6 months and 1, 4.5 and 8 years of age. The response rate at 8 years was 80% of the questionnaires distributed (4,051/5,044), that is 71% of the families entering the study (4,051/5,654).
The prevalence of recurrent wheeze decreased from infancy to school age (5,4% to 3,4%), but the prevalence of doctor-diagnosed asthma increased from 2,1% in infancy to 5,7% at 8 years of age. The prevalence of doctor-diagnosed eczema was more than halved from infancy to school age (20.9%, 8.6 % and 7.9% at age 1, 4 and 8 years, respectively), while doctor-diagnosed food allergy decreased slightly (4.9%, 2.8% and 3.5%). Doctor-diagnosed rhinitis increased from 1.7 % at age 4 to 5.6 % at age 8 years.
The prevalence of school age asthma increased with the number of allergic manifestations that was seen during infancy. Of those with 3 early manifestations (eczema, food allergy and wheeze treated with inhaled corticosteroids) more than 60% had doctor-diagnosed asthma at 8 years, compared with only 3% school age asthma among those who were symptom-free in infancy.
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