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Asthma and farm exposures - a cohort of rural Iowa children.

Authors
Merchant-JA; Naleway-AL; Svendsen-ER; Kelly-KM; Burmeister-LF; Stromquist-AM; Taylor-CD; Thorne-PS; Reynolds-SJ; Sanderson-WT; Chrischilles-EA
Source
Environ Health Perspect 2005 Mar; 113(3):350-356
NIOSHTIC No.
20029768
Abstract
Epidemiologic studies of farm children are of international interest because farm children are less often atopic, have less allergic disease, and often have less asthma than do nonfarm children--findings consistent with the hygiene hypothesis. We studied a cohort of rural Iowa children to determine the association between farm and other environmental risk factors with four asthma outcomes: doctor-diagnosed asthma, doctor-diagnosed asthma/medication for wheeze, current wheeze, and cough with exercise. Doctor-diagnosed asthma prevalence was 12%, but at least one of these four health outcomes was found in more than a third of the cohort. Multivariable models of the four health outcomes found independent associations between male sex (three asthma outcomes), age (three asthma outcomes), a personal history of allergies (four asthma outcomes), family history of allergic disease (two asthma outcomes), premature birth (one asthma outcome), early respiratory infection (three asthma outcomes), high-risk birth (two asthma outcomes), and farm exposure to raising swine and adding antibiotics to feed (two asthma outcomes). The high prevalence of rural childhood asthma and asthma symptoms underscores the need for asthma screening programs and improved asthma diagnosis and treatment. The high prevalence of asthma health outcomes among farm children living on farms that raise swine (44.1%, p = 0.01) and raise swine and add antibiotics to feed (55.8%, p = 0.013), despite lower rates of atopy and personal histories of allergy, suggests the need for awareness and prevention measures and more population-based studies to further assess environmental and genetic determinants of asthma among farm children.
Keywords
Occupational-exposure; Occupational-diseases; Bronchial-asthma; Agriculture; Agricultural-workers; Agricultural-industry; Farmers; Children; Diseases; Epidemiology; Environmental-factors; Risk-factors; Risk-analysis
Contact
J.A. Merchant, University of Iowa College of Public Health, E220H1 General Hospital, Iowa City, IA 52242 USA
CODEN
EVHPAZ
Publication Date
20050301
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
james-merchant@uiowa.edu
Funding Type
Grant
Fiscal Year
2005
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
Grant-Number-T01-CCT-810435
Issue of Publication
3
ISSN
0091-6765
Source Name
Environmental Health Perspectives
State
CO; IA
Performing Organization
Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado
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