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Clinical Investigations: ASTHMA |

Risk Factors For Childhood Asthma in Costa Rica*

Juan C. Celedón, MD, MPH, FCCP; Manuel E. Soto-Quiros, MD, PhD; Edwin K. Silverman, MD, PhD; Lars Å. Hanson, MD; Scott T. Weiss, MD, MS
Author and Funding Information

*From the Channing Laboratory (Drs. Celedón, Silverman, and Weiss), Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA; Department of Pediatrics (Dr. Soto-Quiros), Hospital Nacional de Niños, San José, Costa Rica; and Department of Clinical Immunology (Dr. Hanson), University ofGöteborg, Göteborg, Sweden.

Correspondence to: Juan C. Celedón, MD, MPH, FCCP, Channing Laboratory, 181 Longwood Ave, Boston, MA 02115; e-mail: juan.celedon@channing.harvard.edu



Chest. 2001;120(3):785-790. doi:10.1378/chest.120.3.785
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Background: Little is known about factors determining the pathogenesis and severity of asthma in Latin American countries. Costa Rica, one of the most prosperous Latin American nations, has a very high asthma prevalence.

Objective: To examine the relation between potential risk factors and childhood asthma in Costa Rica.

Methods: Cross-sectional study of 214 schoolchildren aged 10 to 13 years participating in phase II of the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood.

Results: After adjustment for age, gender, area of residence, maternal smoking during pregnancy, and airway responsiveness to hypertonic saline solution, sensitization to house dust mites was associated with asthma (odds ratio [OR], 2.2; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.1 to 4.4; p = 0.02). In the multivariate analysis, parental education no higher than high school (OR, 3.0; 95% CI, 1.4 to 6.4; p < 0.01) and parental history of asthma (OR, 2.6; 95% CI, 1.3 to 5.2; p < 0.01) were also independent predictors of childhood asthma.

Conclusions: Sensitization to house dust mites, low parental education, and parental history of asthma are associated with asthma in Costa Rica.


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