Sixty-four asthmatics and seventy-five control subjects from rural villages and various urban settings have been investigated. Rural asthmatics had a significantly higher IgE level than both urban asthmatics and village controls. Urban asthmatics had similar IgE levels to urban controls. There was no relationship between IgE levels and the results of skin tests for asthma allergens. Stool parasites were found as frequently in asthmatics as in controls. Our findings do not support the theory that parasitic infestation, high IgE levels or rural living protect from asthma.
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