PURPOSE: Despite a number of epidemiologic studies supporting an association between asthma and obesity, controversy and inconsistency in the literature remain. In this study the relationship between body mass index (BMI) and the development of an objective marker for asthma, methacholine airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR), was investigated in adult population.
METHODS: We investigated the association between airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) and obesity in adults referred for confirmation of asthma diagnosis. Data were analyzed for obesity class I (body mass index [BMI] 30-34.9 kg/m2), class II (BMI 35-39.9 kg/m2), and class III (BMI over 40 kg/m2) compare to normal weight 18.5 -25 kg/m2)
RESULTS: Of 17,195 subjects refered in our center between 1980 and 2000, 5623 subjects demonstrated AHR (32.7%);( CP20 less than 8 mg/mL) The odds ratio increased from 1.15 (95% CI 1.04-1.26)for class I to 1.46 (95% CI 1.20-1.77) for class III.
CONCLUSIONS: Obesity was found to be associated with AHR and appears to be a risk factor for asthma
CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: Research is urgently needed to further elucidate this relationship and understand the causal mechanisms of obesity and asthma association. From a public health standpoint, if asthma were added to the list of conditions related to obesity, then reducing the prevalence of obesity could be expected to produce even greater public health benefits than are currently estimated
DISCLOSURE: The following authors have nothing to disclose: Manon Labrecque, Marie-Pierre Hogan, Heberto Guezzo, Jocelyne Larcheveque
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