The Prevalence of Allergy and IgE Antibodies to Inhalant Allergens in Swedish School Children

Authors

  • G. HATTEVIG,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Paediatrics, Central Hospital, Skövde, the University Hospital, Linköping and the Department of Clinical Immunology, Karolinska Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden
    Search for more papers by this author
  • B. KJELLMAN,

    1. Department of Paediatrics, Central Hospital, Skövde, the University Hospital, Linköping and the Department of Clinical Immunology, Karolinska Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden
    Search for more papers by this author
  • B. BJÖRKSTÉN,

    1. Department of Paediatrics, Central Hospital, Skövde, the University Hospital, Linköping and the Department of Clinical Immunology, Karolinska Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden
    Search for more papers by this author
  • S. G. O. JOHANSSON

    1. Department of Paediatrics, Central Hospital, Skövde, the University Hospital, Linköping and the Department of Clinical Immunology, Karolinska Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden
    Search for more papers by this author

(G. H.) Department of Paediatrics Central Hospital 541 85 Skóvde Sweden

Abstract

ABSTRACT. Out of 242 children (10 and 14 years of age) in one school-district 221 (93 %) were evaluated for atopy/allergy by a questionnaire, interview, physical examination and determination of S-IgE and IgE-antibodies (RAST) to pollen, animal danders and house dust mite. Eighteen months after the initial examination all 221 children were re-interviewed. All children with previous or current symptoms of atopy/allergy, all children with positive RAST despite a negative history and 20 non-atopic/non-allergic RAST-negative children were tested with a skin prick test (SPT). At the initial examination the cumulative incidence of atopy/allergy was 32.6% and positive RAST was obtained in 40 children (18.1%). At the follow-up the incidence of atopic/allergic symptoms during the last 18 months was 25.8%. The current prevalence of allergy to pollen and danders, assessed by interview only, was 19 % and 9 % respectively while determined by both interview and positive SPT 15 % and 5 % respectively. The mean S-IgE (78 kU/l) of the children with current symptoms differed significantly (p<0.001) from that (19 kU/l) of the non-atopic ones. There was no relationship between S-IgE and the stage of puberty. Ten of the 11 children with positive RAST, but no atopy/allergy intially, developed clinical atopy/allergy during the follow-up.

Ancillary