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Prevalence and factors associated with asthma among school children in rural Puducherry, India

There is paucity of data on magnitude and risk factors associated with asthma in developing countries like India. The study aims to assess the prevalence and factors associated with asthma. A cross sectional study was conducted among 275 school children aged 12-15 years age group using modified International study on Allergy and Asthma in childhood (ISAAC) questionnaire in rural Puducherry. Data on various risk factors were collected. Data was analysed by univariate and multivariate analysis and expressed in proportion or percentages. The overall prevalence of bronchial asthma was found to be 8.7%. The prevalence of asthma was comparatively more in 12-13 year age group (11.4%) compared to 14-15 year age group (7.1%). Boys had a higher prevalence of asthma (10.1%) compared to girls (7.1%). Family history of bronchial asthma (OR=6.64), presence of hey in the house (OR=9.79), exercise as aggravating factor (OR=4.63) and 2nd birth order (OR=0.06) were independently associated with bronchial asthma. Asthma among school children is a public health problem in this area. Further descriptive and analytical studies will be required to describe the risk factor analysis in different geographical regions.

Author(s): Ganesh Kumar S, Premarajan KC, Sonali Sarkar, Swaroop Kumar Sahu, Sahana, Ambika, Abhishek, Antony, Aprajita, Rekha