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Keywords:

  • asthma;
  • child;
  • exercise;
  • sweat;
  • transepidermal water loss

To cite this article: Oflu A, Soyer OU, Tuncer A, Sackesen C, Kalayci O. Eccrine sweat response in children with asthma. Allergy 2010; 65: 645–648.

Abstract

Background:  Even though there is a general conviction among parents of asthmatic children and pediatricians that asthmatic children sweat more than healthy ones, this has not been formally tested.

Aim:  To determine sweating response and factors affecting this response in children with asthma and compare these findings with healthy children.

Method:  Eighty-two children with asthma and 51 healthy controls aged 6–18 years were enrolled in the study. Transepidermal water loss (TEWL) was measured on palmar, volar, forehead, and back surfaces before and after exercise and was expressed as the difference between the measurements recorded before and after exercise.

Results:  Transepidermal water loss measurements (after exercise – resting) on the palmar surface were higher in children with asthma [22.8 g/mh (15–34.3)] compared with healthy children [15.2 g/m2 h (6–22.2)] (P < 0.001). However, a gender stratified analysis showed that the TEWL measurements were higher on all surfaces only in boys but not in girls. Within the group of asthmatic children, TEWL measurements on the volar surface and back were lower in patients using anti-inflammatory therapy compared with those who were on as needed bronchodilator therapy only.

Conclusion:  Our results show that asthma is associated with a higher rate of sweating response to exercise in boys, and anti-inflammatory treatment decreases the amount of sweating. The relationship of eccrine sweating with muscarinic receptor response and methacholine hyperresponsiveness remains to be determined.