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Obesity increases asthma risk in kids, claims largest study

Obesity increases asthma risk in kids, claims largest study

Obesity increases asthma risk in kids, claims largest Paediatric study.

A new of its kind study published in the journal Pediatrics reports that elimination of childhood obesity may avoid ten per cent of pediatric asthma cases. The findings of the study were based on the analysis of medical records of more than 500,000 children.

“Pediatric asthma is among the most prevalent childhood conditions and comes at a high cost to patients, families and the greater health system. There are few preventable risk factors to reduce its incidence, but our data show that reducing the onset of childhood obesity could significantly lower the public health burden of asthma,” said Terri Finkel, MD, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer at Nemours Children’s Hospital in Orlando and one of three Nemours researchers participating in the study. “Addressing childhood obesity should be a priority to help improve the quality of life of children and help reduce pediatric asthma.”

In a similar study published earlier in the American Journal of Physiology-Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology, Speciality Medical Dialogues has reported that obesity might alter the functioning of airway muscles, increasing the risk of developing asthma.

Read Also: Obesity increases asthma risk through changes in airway muscle

The study is among the first to use the resources of PEDSnet, a multi-specialty network that conducts observational research and clinical trials across eight of the nation’s largest children’s health systems

The researchers performed a retrospective cohort study and reviewed de-identified data of patients ages two to 17 without a history of asthma, receiving care from six pediatric academic medical centers between 2009 and 2015. Overweight or obese patients were matched with normal weight patients of the same age, gender, race, ethnicity, insurance type, and location of care. The study included data from 507,496 children and 19,581,972 encounters.

The researchers In their analysis found that the incidence of an asthma diagnosis among children with obesity was significantly higher than in children in a normal weight range and that 23 to 27 per cent of new asthma cases in children with obesity are directly attributable to obesity.

Read Also: Obesity may exacerbate asthma in children

Moreover, obesity among children with asthma appears to increase disease severity. Being overweight was identified as a modest risk factor, and the association was diminished when the most stringent definition of asthma was used.

According to the researchers, this is the first study of its kind, looking at obesity and the risk of developing asthma entirely in a pediatric population, and is made possible through the PEDSnet data collaboration and the PEDSnet collaboration brings the power of Big Data to pediatric research and medicine–as well as the expertise to structure the data and understand how to extract the most meaningful points.

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Source: With inputs from the journal Pediatrics

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