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JAMA. 1999 Dec 8;282(22):2125-30.

The heritability of otitis media: a twin and triplet study.

Author information

1
Department of Otolaryngology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA. casselm@chplink.chp.edu

Abstract

CONTEXT:

Anatomical, physiological, and epidemiological data indicate that there may be a significant genetic component to prolonged time with and recurrent episodes of otitis media in children.

OBJECTIVE:

To determine the genetic component of time with and episodes of middle ear effusion and acute otitis media (AOM) during the first 2 years of life.

DESIGN:

Prospective twin and triplet cohort study with enrollment from 1982 through 1995.

SETTING:

Otitis Media Research Center in the ear, nose, and throat clinic of Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pa.

PATIENTS:

A total of 168 healthy same-sex twin and 7 triplet sets were recruited within the first 2 months of life; zygosity results were available for 140 sets; 138 (99%) of these were followed up for 1 year and 126 (90%) for 2 years.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Proportion of time with middle ear effusion, episodes of middle ear effusion, and episodes of AOM by zygosity status.

RESULTS:

At the 2-year end point, the estimate of heritability of time with middle ear effusion was 0.73 (P<.001). The estimates of discordance for 3 or more episodes of middle ear effusion were 0.04 for monozygotic twins and 0.37 for dizygotic twins (P = .01). The estimate of discordance of an episode of AOM in monozygotic twins was 0.04 compared with 0.49 in dizygotic twins (P = .005).

CONCLUSIONS:

Our study suggests there is a strong genetic component to the amount of time with middle ear effusion and episodes of middle ear effusion and AOM in children.

PMID:
10591333
DOI:
10.1001/jama.282.22.2125
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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