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Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2014 Jun;112(6):525-32. doi: 10.1016/j.anai.2014.03.006. Epub 2014 Apr 6.

Association between childhood allergic disease, psychological comorbidity, and injury requiring medical attention.

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Department of Dermatology, Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois.
Departments of Dermatology, Preventive Medicine, and Medical Social Sciences, Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois. Electronic address:



Children with allergic disease have multiple risk factors for accidental injuries.


To determine the prevalence of injuries requiring medical treatment in US children with allergic disease.


The authors analyzed data from the 2007 to 2008 National Survey of Children's Health, including a nationally representative sample of 27,556 children 0 to 5 years old.


The prevalence (95% confidence interval [CI]) of at least 1 allergic disease was 29.4% (28.0-30.8); 6.6% (5.8-7.4) were diagnosed with asthma, 15.0% (14.0-16.0) with eczema, 11.6% (10.6-12.6) with hay fever, and 6.1% (5.4-6.9) with food allergy. Children with allergic disorders had higher odds of at least 1 comorbid psychiatric and behavioral disorder (PBD; survey logistic regression; odds ratio 2.93, 95% CI 2.13-4.03), including attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (4.75, 2.89-7.80), depression (6.03, 1.29-28.27), anxiety (5.54, 2.70-11.37), conduct/oppositional defiant disorder (2.97, 1.88-4.70), and learning delay (2.49, 1.70-3.66), but not autism/Asperger disorder (1.89, 0.98-3.64). The prevalence of injury in the past year requiring medical attention was 10.5% (95% CI 9.5-11.4). The association between allergic disease and injury requiring medical attention was mediated in part by a PBD (Sobel test 0.0021, 95% CI 0.0014-0.0029, P < .0001; bootstrapping approach, indirect effects, odds ratio 1.005, 95% CI 1.003-1.007; Baron-Kenny β(yx,m) = 0.04, P < .0001, R(2) = 0.002). However, children with at least 1 allergic disorder (1.74, 1.23-2.46), including eczema (1.59, 1.01-2.50), asthma (1.91, 1.10-3.31), hay fever (2.05, 1.24-3.39), and food allergies (2.00, 1.10-3.67), had higher odds of sustaining injuries even after controlling for comorbid PBDs and medical disorders.


The results suggest that the association between allergic disease and injury is multifactorial, including being secondary to PBD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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