PURPOSE OF THE STUDY.
The goal of this study was to identify exacerbating factors of rhinitis among Korean children.
A total of 3804 Korean children, between the ages of 6 and 7 years who were included in the 2010 ISAAC (International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood), were included in this study. Children were recruited from 45 elementary schools throughout Korea and were included if they had parental completion of the ISAAC questionnaire and skin prick testing to 18 aeroallergens at the time of enrollment.
Rhinitis was assessed with the question, “In the past 12 months, has your child had a problem with sneezing, or a runny or blocked nose when he/she did not have a cold or the flu?” Children were classified as having “allergic rhinitis” if they endorsed symptoms of rhinitis and were sensitized to at least 1 aeroallergen. If sensitization was not present but the child had symptoms of rhinitis, they were categorized as having “rhinitis.” Asthma and eczema were also assessed by using the questionnaire, and children were categorized as having “overlapped allergic rhinitis” and “overlapped rhinitis” if these conditions were present. Familial and demographic information and housing characteristics, such as housing type, the age of the building, presence of dampness and mold, remodeling of the home, and history of moving to a newly built home within 1 year of birth, were also assessed by using the questionnaire.
The prevalence of rhinitis and allergic rhinitis in this population was 43.4% and 22.1%, respectively. In adjusted analyses, male gender and children with a parental history of atopy were more likely to experience symptoms of rhinitis or allergic rhinitis. Children who had moved to a newly built home within the first year of life were also more likely to experience symptoms of rhinitis (odds ratio [OR]: 1.42 [95% confidence interval (CI): 1.18–1.71]) and allergic rhinitis (OR: 1.42 [95% CI: 1.13–1.79]), and this association was more pronounced in those children with other atopic conditions (OR: 3.09 [95% CI: 1.71–5.57] for overlapping allergic rhinitis).
In this study of Korean children, those who had moved to a newly built home in their first year of life were more likely to experience rhinitis and allergic rhinitis symptoms by age 6 to 7 years. This effect was more pronounced among those who had other atopic conditions.
This study is the first to demonstrate that newly built home exposure in early life may be a risk factor for developing allergic disease. The authors hypothesize that this finding may be due to higher concentrations of volatile organic compounds found inside newly built homes. Further research on this hypothesized mechanism, as well as confirmatory studies in other geographic locations, is needed.
- Copyright © 2014 by the American Academy of Pediatrics