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Comparison of allergic diseases, symptoms and respiratory infections between Finnish and Russian school children.
Eur J Epidemiol 2008; 23(2):123-33EJ

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Little is known about differences in allergic and respiratory diseases between the Finnish and Russian populations.

METHODS

We conducted a population-based cross-sectional study to compare the occurrence of allergic diseases and respiratory infections among school children in the towns of Imatra in Finland and Svetogorsk in Russia on either side of the common border. The study population consisted of 512 Finnish and 581 Russian school children aged 7-16 years (response rate 79%). We used multiple logistic regression analysis to calculate odds ratios adjusting for age and gender.

RESULTS

The prevalences of asthma (6.7 vs. 3.9%, adjusted odds ratio (OR) 1.54, 95% confidence interval (CI 0.87-2.71), allergic rhinitis (15.2 vs. 8.8%, OR 1.81, 1.22-2.68), allergic conjunctivitis (4.7 vs. 3.2%, 1.33, 0.70-2.53), and atopic dermatitis (10.5 vs. 5.9%, 1.78, 1.12-2.83) were substantially higher among school children in Imatra compared to those in Svetogorsk, but the symptoms were more severe among allergic Russian children. Tonsillitis (adjusted OR 0.11, 95% CI 0.07-0.17), sinusitis (0.39, 0.24-0.63), bronchitis (0.41, 0.27-0.62) and pneumonia (0.19, 0.04-0.90) occurred less frequently in the Finnish children, whereas otitis media (2.37, 1.55-3.62) and common cold (4.07, 3.12-5.31) were more frequent in Finland.

CONCLUSIONS

Allergic diseases are more common in Finnish than Russian school children, but the symptoms are more severe among allergic Russian children. Respiratory infections are in general more frequent in Russian children. "Western" lifestyle habits, differences in diagnostic procedures and environmental factors, and availability of health care and medications are discussed as possible explanations for the observed differences.

Authors+Show Affiliations

South Karelia Allergy and Environment Institute, Lääkäritie 15, 55330 Tiuruniemi, Finland. timo.hugg@oulu.fiNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

18202828

Citation

Hugg, Timo, et al. "Comparison of Allergic Diseases, Symptoms and Respiratory Infections Between Finnish and Russian School Children." European Journal of Epidemiology, vol. 23, no. 2, 2008, pp. 123-33.
Hugg T, Ruotsalainen R, Jaakkola MS, et al. Comparison of allergic diseases, symptoms and respiratory infections between Finnish and Russian school children. Eur J Epidemiol. 2008;23(2):123-33.
Hugg, T., Ruotsalainen, R., Jaakkola, M. S., Pushkarev, V., & Jaakkola, J. J. (2008). Comparison of allergic diseases, symptoms and respiratory infections between Finnish and Russian school children. European Journal of Epidemiology, 23(2), pp. 123-33. doi:10.1007/s10654-007-9217-z.
Hugg T, et al. Comparison of Allergic Diseases, Symptoms and Respiratory Infections Between Finnish and Russian School Children. Eur J Epidemiol. 2008;23(2):123-33. PubMed PMID: 18202828.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Comparison of allergic diseases, symptoms and respiratory infections between Finnish and Russian school children. AU - Hugg,Timo, AU - Ruotsalainen,Risto, AU - Jaakkola,Maritta S, AU - Pushkarev,Vadim, AU - Jaakkola,Jouni J K, Y1 - 2008/01/17/ PY - 2007/05/15/received PY - 2007/12/20/accepted PY - 2008/1/19/pubmed PY - 2008/5/31/medline PY - 2008/1/19/entrez SP - 123 EP - 33 JF - European journal of epidemiology JO - Eur. J. Epidemiol. VL - 23 IS - 2 N2 - BACKGROUND: Little is known about differences in allergic and respiratory diseases between the Finnish and Russian populations. METHODS: We conducted a population-based cross-sectional study to compare the occurrence of allergic diseases and respiratory infections among school children in the towns of Imatra in Finland and Svetogorsk in Russia on either side of the common border. The study population consisted of 512 Finnish and 581 Russian school children aged 7-16 years (response rate 79%). We used multiple logistic regression analysis to calculate odds ratios adjusting for age and gender. RESULTS: The prevalences of asthma (6.7 vs. 3.9%, adjusted odds ratio (OR) 1.54, 95% confidence interval (CI 0.87-2.71), allergic rhinitis (15.2 vs. 8.8%, OR 1.81, 1.22-2.68), allergic conjunctivitis (4.7 vs. 3.2%, 1.33, 0.70-2.53), and atopic dermatitis (10.5 vs. 5.9%, 1.78, 1.12-2.83) were substantially higher among school children in Imatra compared to those in Svetogorsk, but the symptoms were more severe among allergic Russian children. Tonsillitis (adjusted OR 0.11, 95% CI 0.07-0.17), sinusitis (0.39, 0.24-0.63), bronchitis (0.41, 0.27-0.62) and pneumonia (0.19, 0.04-0.90) occurred less frequently in the Finnish children, whereas otitis media (2.37, 1.55-3.62) and common cold (4.07, 3.12-5.31) were more frequent in Finland. CONCLUSIONS: Allergic diseases are more common in Finnish than Russian school children, but the symptoms are more severe among allergic Russian children. Respiratory infections are in general more frequent in Russian children. "Western" lifestyle habits, differences in diagnostic procedures and environmental factors, and availability of health care and medications are discussed as possible explanations for the observed differences. SN - 0393-2990 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/18202828/Comparison_of_allergic_diseases_symptoms_and_respiratory_infections_between_Finnish_and_Russian_school_children_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1007/s10654-007-9217-z DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -