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The Course of Asthma Parallels that of Allergic Rhinitis: A 23-Year Follow-Up Study of College Students

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Abstract:

The purpose of this study is to examine the relationship between the course of asthma and allergic rhinitis among former Brown University students who were diagnosed with these diseases either before or after their freshman year of 1962 or 1963. A total of 738 former students, who were evaluated and underwent skin testing during their freshman year, completed a 23-year follow-up questionnaire inquiring of their history of allergies and asthma and are the focus of this study. The activity of asthma as related to the course of allergic rhinitis (hay fever and/or nonseasonal allergic rhinitis) was examined. Among 44 asthmatic subjects with purely seasonal allergic rhinitis (hay fever and no history of nonseasonal allergic rhinitis), asthma was active in 75% of those with worse hay fever, 70% of those with unchanged hay fever, 50% of those with better (but not symptom-free) hay fever, and 10% of those with symptom-free hay fever. The resolution of asthma symptoms correlated significantly with improvement in hay fever (p = 0.0053). Among 70 asthmatics with any form of allergic rhinitis (hay fever and/or nonseasonal allergic rhinitis), asthma was active in 75.0% of those with worse allergic rhinitis, 66.7% of those with unchanged allergic rhinitis, 53.3% of those with better (but not symptom-free) allergic rhinitis, and 20.0% of those with symptom-free allergic rhinitis. The resolution of asthma symptoms correlated significantly with improvement in allergic rhinitis (p = 0.0052). The activity of allergic rhinitis as related to the course of asthma was also examined. Among 44 asthmatic subjects with purely seasonal allergic rhinitis (hay fever and no history of nonseasonal allergic rhinitis), hay fever was active in 100% of those with worse asthma, 100% of those with unchanged asthma, 90.9% of those with better (but not symptom-free) asthma, and 60.9% of those with symptom-free asthma. The resolution of hay fever symptoms correlated significantly with improvement in asthma (p = 0.0109). Among 71 asthmatic subjects with any form of allergic rhinitis (hay fever and/or nonseasonal allergic rhinitis), allergic rhinitis was active in 91.9% of those with active asthma and 64.7% of those with symptom-free asthma. The resolution of allergic rhinitis symptoms correlated significantly with improvement in asthma (p = 0.0078). In summary, among individuals with asthma and allergic rhinitis, improvement of allergic rhinitis was associated with a resolution of asthma symptoms, whereas a worsening of allergic rhinitis was associated with the persistence of asthma symptoms. Likewise, among asthmatic subjects with allergic rhinitis, improvement of asthma was associated with a resolution of allergic rhinitis symptoms, whereas a worsening of asthma was associated with the persistence of allergic rhinitis symptoms.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.2500/108854100778249123

Publication date: 2000-11-01

More about this publication?
  • Allergy and Asthma Proceedings is a peer reviewed publication dedicated to distributing timely scientific research regarding advancements in the knowledge and practice of allergy, asthma and immunology. Its primary readership consists of allergists and pulmonologists.

    The goal of the Proceedings is to publish articles with a predominantly clinical focus which directly impact quality of care for patients with allergic disease and asthma.

    Featured topics include asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, food allergies, allergic skin diseases, diagnostic techniques, allergens, and treatment modalities. Published material includes peer-reviewed original research, clinical trials and review articles.

    Articles marked "F" offer free full text for personal noncommercial use only.

    The journal is indexed in Thomson Reuters Web of Science and Science Citation Index Expanded, plus the National Library of Medicine's PubMed service.
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