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Georgian Med News. 2007 Mar;(144):38-41.

Prevalence of asthma and allergies among adolescents in Georgia: comparison between two surveys.

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  • 1Center of Allergy and Immunology, Tbilisi, Georgia.


Since healthcare costs for asthma and allergies are a heavy burden for a society, it is a general interest to know whether this temporal trend is still ongoing or whether a plateau has been reached over the last decade. We therefore aimed to follow the trends in the prevalence of asthma, allergic rhino-conjunctivitis, and atopic eczema in Georgian schoolchildren of 13-14 years of age between 1996 and 2003. Surveys were carried out according to the ISAAC methodology in Tbilisi and Kutaisi centres. The mean prevalence increased steadily for current wheezing from 3.6% to 5.6% (p=0.0001) and current rhino-conjunctivitis from 4.6% to 5.7% (p=0.008), while the prevalence of current atopic eczema has remained actually constant, 4.1% and 4.3%, respectively. The prevalence of allergic diseases showed diverging gender trends. The prevalence of rhino-conjunctivitis and eczema in girls has decreased, while in boys increased. The prevalence changes, particularly the increasing pattern, were more evident in Tbilisi vs. Kutaisi centre. The differences could be associated with so-called westernization processes in the capital of Georgia. The investigation of risk factors at regional level could be important in order to undertake preventive measures.

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