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Ann Agric Environ Med. 2008;15(1):21-7.

Increased sensitization prevalence to common inhalant and food allergens in young adult Polish males.

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  • 1Military Institute of Health Sciences, Department of Infectious Diseases and Allergology, Szaserow 128, 00-909 Warszawa 60, Poland.


Numerous epidemiological studies concluded recently have suggested that the prevalence of allergic diseases has increased, which mainly results from an increase in the prevalence of atopic diseases. The problem is even more difficult because the number of people sensitized, who are prone to fall ill, exceeds the number of people presently ill. The prevalence of sensitization to atopic allergens and its time dynamic is still unknown. The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of atopic sensitization in the population of young Polish males and to compare these findings with those obtained 16 years before. The present study was performed on a group of 156 randomized healthy men, voluntary blood donors, aged 18-27 years. Having filled out a questionnaire, they underwent skin prick tests (SPTs) to common inhalant allergens. They also had a blood sample taken to have serum total IgE concentration and allergen-specific IgE (asIgE) determined to inhalant and food allergens. Positive SPT findings to at least one allergen were found in 50 (32%) subjects, and in equivocal 12 (8%). In 54 (35%) subjects asIgE to inhalant allergens was found, including 11 (7%) who had been tested for food allergens. The most common sensitizing allergen was house dust mite (20%), followed by grass/rye pollen (17%), while mould spore was the least common (4%). In town dwellers, positive SPTs were found in 41%, and were positive in 19% of people living in rural areas. While comparing the present findings with those of a similar study carried out in 1986, we found that in the last 16 years there had been a 52% increase in the prevalence of asIgE to atopic allergens. This means that the percentage of sensitized people can be estimated to have increased at a rate of approximately 3.25%/year.

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