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Asian Pac J Allergy Immunol. 2014 Jun;32(2):103-10.

The indoor environment and inner-city childhood asthma.

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Division of Allergy and Immunology, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, MA, U.S.



Exposure to indoor pollutants and allergens has been speculated to cause asthma symptoms and exacerbations and influence the risk of developing asthma. The aim of this article is to review the medical literature regarding the role of the indoor environment on inner-city childhood asthma.


A literature search was performed in PubMed. Studies focusing on inner-city indoor allergen, childhood asthma, and environmental controls were included.


The prevalence of asthma in children is increasing especially in inner-city area. Exposure to high levels of indoor allergens and pollutants has been related to asthma development. Studies have shown that mouse, cockroach, pets, dust mite, mold, tobacco smoke, endotoxin and nitrogen dioxide are the important exposures. Recent studies have shown that indoor environmental control is beneficial in reducing asthma morbidity and development.


Inner-city children are exposed to various indoor allergens and pollutants that may lead to asthma development and exacerbation of existing asthma. Multifaceted environmental controls are beneficial in improving asthma symptom and maybe a viable prevention strategy. Further prospective studies of environmental intervention are needed to further identify effective strategies to improve and prevent asthma symptoms in inner-city children.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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