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J Asthma. 1996;33(4):255-64.

Neonatal characteristics as risk factors for preschool asthma.

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Bureau of Chronic Disease Epidemiology, Laboratory Centre for Disease Control, Health Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.


Childhood asthma usually begins early in life. Neonatal characteristics are reportedly predictive of symptom onset. This investigation utilized data from a provincial health organization to evaluate the effect of several birth characteristics on asthma incidence and hospitalization for asthma during age 0-4. Using logistic regression, the odds ratios (OR) for the following variables indicate a significant (p < 0.05) association with physician-diagnosed preschool asthma: male gender (OR = 1.72), birthweight < 1500 g (OR = 2.11), prematurity (OR = 1.34), respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) in the presence (OR = 2.95) or absence (OR = 1.61) of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), and transient tachypnea of the newborn (TTN; OR = 1.36). Male gender (OR = 1.91), birthweight < 1500 g (OR = 2.56), RDS with and without BPD (OR = 3.35 and 2.50, respectively), TTN (OR = 2.08), and severe birth asphyxia (OR = 1.94) showed an important association with hospitalization due to asthma. Neonatal characteristics are important determinants for the risk of preschool asthma, even after mutual adjustment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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