Incidence and timing of offspring asthma, wheeze, allergic rhinitis, atopic dermatitis, and food allergy and association with maternal history of asthma and allergic rhinitis.World Allergy Organ J. 2021 Mar; 14(3):100526.WA
Studying the developmental precursors of allergy may help explain the mechanisms (or etiology) of allergic disease. We studied childhood respiratory and allergic diseases in a pre-birth cohort from the United States.
We assessed the associations between maternal history of asthma and the development of respiratory and allergic diseases in offspring. We also assessed associations with maternal history of allergic rhinitis.
Maternal history of asthma and allergic rhinitis was self-reported during early pregnancy. Offspring respiratory and allergy information was obtained from electronic medical records. Adjusted Cox proportional hazard models assessed the associations between maternal history of asthma and development of respiratory and allergic diseases in the offspring up to 8 years. A similar approach was used for maternal history of allergic rhinitis.
Children born to women with a history of asthma had a 77% greater risk of developing asthma, a 45% greater risk of atopic dermatitis/eczema, and a 65% greater risk of wheeze (all p < 0.01), but no significantly increased risk of allergic rhinitis or food allergies, compared to children born to women with no history of asthma. Maternal history of allergic rhinitis was not associated with any child allergy outcome, and maternal history of both asthma and allergic rhinitis was associated with child atopic dermatitis/eczema only.
Maternal history of asthma was significantly associated with offspring respiratory and allergic diagnoses. The association between maternal history of asthma and offspring asthma and atopic dermatitis is a novel finding. Our findings may guide physicians who counsel families with a history of maternal asthma and allergic rhinitis about their child's risk of developing respiratory and allergic diseases.