An association between asthma and antibiotic usage has been demonstrated, and the issue of reverse causation and confounding by indication is much debated.
Our aim was to study the association between different classes of antibiotics and prescription of asthma medication in a register-based cohort of all Swedish children, born between July 2005 and June 2009, ever treated with antibiotics.
Data on dispensed prescriptions of antibiotics (ATC-codes J01) and asthma medication (ATC-codes R03A-D) were requested from the Prescribed Drug Register. The association between dispensed prescriptions of different classes of antibiotics and asthma medication was analysed with Cox regression and a descriptive sequence symmetry analysis.
In total, 211 192 children had received prescriptions of antibiotics. There was a strong association between prescription of antibiotics and prescription of asthma medication. The hazard ratios (HRs) for asthma medication associated with prescription of amoxicillin, penicillin, cephalosporin and macrolides (Gram-positive infections) were stronger than HRs associated with prescription of sulphonamides, trimethoprim and quinolones (urinary tract infections) and flucloxacillin (skin and soft tissue infections), e.g. first year HR = 2.27 (95% confidence intervals 2.17-2.37) as compared with HR = 1.04 (0.78-1.40). The HR associated with broad spectrum antibiotics was significantly higher than the narrow spectrum.
Our data suggest that the association between antibiotics and asthma is subject to either reverse causation or confounding by indication due to respiratory tract infections. This implies that careful consideration is required as to whether or not symptoms from the respiratory tract in early childhood should be treated with antibiotics or asthma medication.
Given the frequency with which families change residences, the effects of childhood relocations have gained increasing research attention. Many researchers have demonstrated that childhood relocations are associated with a variety of adverse outcomes. However, drawing strong causal claims remains problematic due to uncontrolled confounding factors.
We utilized longitudinal, population-based Swedish registers to generate a nationally representative sample of offspring born 1983-1997 (n = 1 510 463). Using Cox regression and logistic regression, we examined the risk for numerous adverse outcomes after childhood relocation while controlling for measured covariates. To account for unmeasured genetic and environmental confounds, we also compared differentially exposed cousins and siblings.
In the cohort baseline model, each annual relocation was associated with risk for the adverse outcomes, including suicide attempt [hazard ratio (HR) 1.19, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.19-1.20]. However, when accounting for offspring and parental covariates (HR 1.08, 95% CI 1.07-1.09), as well as genetic and environmental confounds shared by cousins (HR 1.07, 95% CI 1.05-1.09) and siblings (HR 1.00, 95% CI 0.97-1.04), the risk for suicide attempt attenuated. We found a commensurate pattern of results for severe mental illness, substance abuse, criminal convictions, and low academic achievement.
Previous research may have overemphasized the independent association between relocations and later adverse outcomes. The results suggest that the association between childhood relocations and suicide attempt, psychiatric problems, and low academic achievement is partially explained by genetic and environmental confounds correlated with relocations. This study demonstrates the importance of using family-based, quasi-experimental designs to test plausible alternate hypotheses when examining causality.
The aim of this study was to measure the levels of cat and dog allergen in homes of families that had either never kept pets or kept or had kept cats or dogs. From a small residential area outside Stockholm consisting of 250 houses with similar exteriors 70 homes were included. Dust samples were collected from mattresses and textile-covered floors. The levels of cat and dog allergen were analysed by ELISA. Fel d1 was found in mattress dust in all 70 homes, median 0.5 micrograms/g [0.24-8.89 micrograms/g (quartiles)] and textile-covered floors 0.7 micrograms/g (0.20-2.52 micrograms/g). Can f1, was found in 98% of the collected samples, mattress dust 1.89 micrograms/g (0.70-9.20 micrograms/g) and textile-covered floor dust 2.5 micrograms/g (1.04-2.72 micrograms/g). There was a positive correlation (p
Asthma is common in both children and adults in the Western world, just like anxiety and depression. While some research has revealed that these diseases might share important environmental and pathophysiological aspects, the exact mechanisms still remain unclear.
To study the correlation firstly between depression or anxiety and asthma diagnosis in adult twins and secondly the association between parental depression or anxiety and offspring asthma in children of twins.
In total, 24 685 adult twins aged 20-47 years were interviewed or completed a Web-based questionnaire and their children were identified through the Multi-Generation Register. Asthma diagnosis was obtained from the Patient Register and the Prescribed Drug Register. Assessment of depression and anxiety was obtained from questionnaires using Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D), major depression and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) from DSM-IV. The association between depression or anxiety and asthma was analyzed with logistic regression adjusting for confounders in twins and offspring. To address genetic and familial environmental confounding, we performed a cotwin analysis using disease-discordant twin pairs.
We found an association between asthma and CES-D, major depression and GAD, for example adjusted OR for major depression and register-based asthma 1.56 (1.36-1.79). Most of the point estimates remained in the co-twin control analysis, indicating that the association was likely not due to genetic or familial environmental factors. There was no association between parental depression and/or anxiety and asthma diagnosis in the offspring which implies lack of genetic confounding.
We found an association between own asthma diagnosis and anxiety or depression, but not with offspring asthma. Our results indicate that the associations were not due to confounding from genes or environment shared by the twins.
BACKGROUND: Dust reservoir sampling is the most commonly used method for assessment of indirect allergen exposure. Because assessment of personal exposure using person-carried pumps is time-consuming and expensive we evaluated the Petri dish sampling method for measurement of airborne cat allergen in classrooms. METHODS: Petri dish sampling was evaluated in three study parts. Part I: by comparison between Petri dish sampling and personal air sampling in 44 classrooms with many (> or = 20%) and few (
BACKGROUND: Special day-care centres for atopic children have been established in Sweden. OBJECTIVE: To study concentrations of cat (Fel d 1) and dog (Can f 1) allergens in settled dust and airborne cat allergen in day-care centres in relation to pet ownership among children and staff, ventilation and general cleaning. METHODS: Twelve allergen avoidance day-care centres and 22 conventional day-care centres were included in the study. Settled dust was collected and analysed with ELISA. Airborne cat allergen levels were measured in eight allergen avoidance and seven conventional centres with a personal air sampler and analysed with an amplified ELISA. Air change rate per hour (ACH) was measured. A questionnaire which focused on keeping of cat and dog among staff and children and frequency of general cleaning was used. RESULTS: In the allergen avoidance day-care centres neither children nor staff reported ownership of cats or dogs, compared with 21/22 of the conventional centres in which children and staff kept furred animals. Fel d 1 and Can f 1 were found in settled dust in all day-care centres. In the allergen avoidance compared with the conventional centres the concentrations of Fel d 1 and Can f 1 were lower, Fel d 1: median 0. 64 microg/g vs 5.45 microg/g and Can f 1: 0.39 microg/g vs 2.51, both P
Although the genetics of asthma has been extensively studied using both quantitative and molecular genetic analysis methods, both approaches lack studies specific to the childhood phenotype and including other allergic diseases. This study aimed to give specific estimates for the heritability of childhood asthma and other allergic diseases, to attempt to replicate findings from genomewide association studies (GWAS) for childhood asthma and to test the same variants against other allergic diseases.
In a cohort of 25 306 Swedish twins aged 9 or 12 years, data on asthma were available from parental interviews and population-based registers. The interviews also inquired about wheeze, hay fever, eczema, and food allergy. Through structural equation modeling, the heritability of all phenotypes was calculated. A subset of 10 075 twins was genotyped for 16 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) selected from previous GWAS; these were first tested for association with asthma and significant findings also against the other allergic diseases.
The heritability of any childhood asthma was 0.82 (95% CI 0.79-0.85). For the other allergic diseases, the range was approximately 0.60-0.80. Associations for six SNPs with asthma were replicated, including rs2305480 in the GSDMB gene (OR 0.80, 95% CI 0.74-0.86, P = 1.5*10(-8) ; other significant associations all below P = 3.5*10(-4) ). Of these, only rs3771180 in IL1RL1 was associated with any other allergic disease (for hay fever, OR 0.64, 95% CI 0.53-0.77, P = 2.5*10(-6) ).
Asthma and allergic diseases of childhood are highly heritable, and these high-risk genetic variants associated specifically with childhood asthma, except for one SNP shared with hay fever.
Impact of asthma medication and familial factors on the association between childhood asthma and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: a combined twin- and register-based study: Epidemiology of Allergic Disease.
Asthma and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are prevalent in childhood and may cause functional impairment and stress in families. Previous research supports an association between asthma and ADHD in children, but several aspects of this relationship are unclear.
Our aim was to study whether the association between asthma and ADHD is restricted to either the inattentive or the hyperactive/impulsive symptoms of ADHD, to explore the impact of asthma severity and asthma medication and the contribution of shared genetic and environmental risk factors on the asthma-ADHD relationship.
Data on asthma, ADHD, zygosity and possible confounders were collected from parental questionnaires at 9 or 12 years on 20 072 twins through the Swedish Twin Register, linked to the Swedish Medical Birth Register, the National Patient Register and the Prescribed Drug Register. The association between asthma and ADHD, the impact of asthma severity and medication, was assessed by generalized estimating equations. Cross-twin-cross-trait correlations (CTCT) were estimated to explore the relative importance of genes and environment for the association.
Asthmatic children had a higher risk of also having ADHD [odds ratio (OR) 1.53, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.16-2.02]. The association was not restricted to either of the two dimensions of ADHD. The magnitude of the association increased with asthma severity (OR 2.84, 95% CI: 1.86-4.35) for = 4 asthma attacks in the last 12 months and was not affected by asthma treatment. The CTCTs possibly indicate that the genetic component in overlap of the disorders is weak.
Childhood asthma, especially severe asthma, is associated with ADHD. Asthma medication seems not to increase the risk of ADHD. Clinicians should be aware of the potential of ADHD in asthma. Optimal asthma care needs to be integrated with effective evaluation and treatment of ADHD in children with co-existing disorders.
Studies have found associations between birth weight and risk of atopic eczema or allergic rhinitis (AR), although this could be due to confounding.
We sought to evaluate associations between fetal growth and the risk of atopic eczema or AR in childhood, controlling for gestational age (GA), shared (familial) environmental and genetic factors.
Data on atopic eczema, AR, birth characteristics and confounders were collected from registers and telephone interviews with the parents of 9- and 12-year-old twins. Firstly, cohort analyses on all twins (eczema n=10 132 and AR n=10 896) were performed. Secondly, to control for genetic and shared environment, co-twin-control analyses were performed in twin pairs discordant for atopic eczema (n=480) and AR (n=332).
The rate of atopic eczema increased with birth weight, from 12.6% in twin children or=3500 g. The rate of AR varied between 7.8% and 8.8%. In the cohort analyses, the odds ratio (OR) for atopic eczema was 1.62 (95% CI: 1.27-2.06) for 500 g increase in birth weight and 1.00 (95% CI: 0.75-1.33) for AR. In co-twin-control analyses on atopic eczema, OR was 3.93 (95% CI: 1.55-9.98) for 500 g increase in birth weight, with no significant difference between monozygotic and dizygotic twins (P=0.84).
We found a positive association between fetal growth and childhood atopic eczema, but not AR, independent of GA, shared environmental and genetic factors. This indicates fetal growth affects the immune system, and supports further studies on early mechanisms.
Exposure to antibiotics in early life may affect future health. Most antibiotics are prescribed in outpatient care, but inpatient exposure is also important. We estimated how specific diagnoses in hospitals corresponded to individual antibiotic exposure.
All pregnant women and children from birth to 5 years of age with infectious diseases and common inpatient diagnoses between July 2005 and November 2011 were identified from the Swedish National Patient Register. Random samples of individuals from predefined groups were drawn, and medical records received from the clinics were manually reviewed for antibiotics.
Medical records for 4319 hospital visits were requested and 3797 (88%) were received. A quarter (25%) of children diagnosed as premature had received antibiotics, and in children from one to 5 years of age, diagnoses associated with bacterial infections were more commonly treated with antibiotics (62.4-90.6%) than those associated with viruses (6.3-22.2%). Pregnant women who had undergone a Caesarean section were more likely to be treated with antibiotics than those who had had a vaginal delivery (40.1% versus 11.1%).
This study defines the proportion of new mothers and young children who received individual antibiotic treatment for specific inpatient diagnoses in Sweden and provides a useful basis for future studies focusing on antibiotic use.