PURPOSE: Allergy is a risk factor for atopic disease: allergic asthma (AA), allergic rhinitis (AR) or atopic dermatitis (AD) development. Due to important differences in allergen size and structure, different allergens tend to sediment at different airway levels as well as exert different skin penetration. The aim of this study was to evaluate if allergy to a particular allergen predisposes to specific development of any of the atopic diseases.
METHODS: We studied medical documentation of children hospitalized at the Department of Pediatrics and Allergology between 2006 and 2010. All the patients underwent standard diagnostic procedures including a thirteen-point-skin-prick-testing (SPT). At least one positive SPT was noted in 225 children (132 boys, 93 girls) aged 2 to 18 years (mean 8.5). These patients entered the study. AA was diagnosed in 69 cases, AR - in 26, AD - in 5. A coexistence of AA and AR was present in 111 cases and asthma-prurigo in 14. The purpose of data analysis was to determine the three independent relations (for three atopic diseases) between the test results and clinical symptoms. Because of small sample size, we used meta-heuristic approaches - IHSA algorithm (Improved Harmony Search Algorithm).
RESULTS: The most often allergy was this to house dust mite (HDM) - 81% occurrence, moulds - 53%, grass pollen - 43, trees pollen - 33% and cat dandruff - 27%. Using IHSA we determined linkage factors - LF - showing the link between being allergic to a specific allergen and the diagnosis of a certain atopic disease. The higher the LF value the stronger the link between allergen and disease. The highest values of LF we demonstrated for alder (17.04), haseltree (10.39), Plantago (15.94), dog (17.03) and cat (18.51) in asthma, for moulds (19.07), cat (11.85) and Plantago (19.77) in AD and for moulds (11.08) and HDM (17.78) in AR.
CONCLUSIONS: We conclude that alder, dog’s dandruf and cat’s fur allergy is mostly linked to asthma, while HDM with AR and moulds and plantago (a common weed) to AD. More investigation whereas the IHSA model is suitable for this kind analysis is needed, however.
CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: SPT may be a valuable addition to patients interview and clinical data in the prediction of atopic disease type.
DISCLOSURE: The following authors have nothing to disclose: Andrzej Fal, Boleslaw Kalicki, Anna Jung, Jerzy Greblicki, Anna Maslany
No Product/Research Disclosure Information