The purpose of this study was to examine the association between ambient air pollution and hospitalization for respiratory infections among children who were younger than 15 years in Toronto during a 4-year period (1998-2001).
Exposures averaged during periods that varied from 1 to 7 days were used to assess the effects of air pollutants, including thoracic particulate matter (PM10), fine (PM2.5) and coarse (PM10-2.5) particulate matter, carbon monoxide (CO), sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), and ozone (O3), on hospitalization for respiratory infections. A case-crossover design was used to calculate odds ratios for the hospitalization adjusted for daily weather conditions with an incremented exposure corresponding to the interquartile range in air pollution exposures.
When particulate matter and gaseous pollutants were mutually taken into account, the effect remained pronounced for PM10-2.5 in both boys and girls. The adjusted odds ratio for 6-day average exposure to PM10-2.5 with an increment of 6.5 microg/m3 was 1.15 (95% confidence interval: 1.02-1.30) for boys and 1.18 (95% confidence interval: 1.01-1.36) for girls. The effect also remained for PM10 in boys and for NO2 in girls. PM2.5, CO, SO2, and O3 showed no significant effects on hospitalization for respiratory infection in both genders when other pollutants were taken into consideration.
Our study suggested a detrimental effect of relatively low levels of ambient particulate matter and gaseous pollutants, especially coarse particulate matter and NO2, on hospitalization for respiratory infections in children.
In a rural district in Western Norway with 400 children under 16 years, we recorded all children with acute respiratory infections who attended their general practitioner during a period of four months. 90 cases were recorded, giving an incidence of 5.6% per month. Half of the patients contacted the doctor within four days from the initial symptom, every sixth waited more than two weeks. Their symptoms were monitored by the parents. Low fever, nasal discharge and cough were the most long-standing symptoms. After three weeks less than 50% of the patients were completely recovered. The children under one year of age recovered more quickly than the rest. No serious complications or sequelae were recorded.
The methods of the retrospective epidemiological analysis of morbidity rate among students attending a specialized polyclinic for students have made it possible to establish the fact that acute respiratory diseases of non-influenza etiology are of the greatest socio-economic importance for students living under the conditions of a hostel. Such importance of these infections is linked with the autonomous character of the epidemic process due to the "mixing" factor, the intensive realization of the drop mechanism of infection transfer, and high morbidity risk in the absence of immunoprophylactic remedies. The results of this study indicate that the student body may be considered a group of primary necessity for prophylactic medical examination aimed at the early detection of the consequences of the past disease and at the organization of timely and effective treatment of young people.
OBJECTIVES: It is well known that children attending childcare have a higher risk of acute respiratory infections compared with children in home care; however, knowledge is sparse regarding how the excess risk of acute respiratory infection varies with age, time since enrollment, and other factors. METHODS: A national register-based study of 138,821 inpatient admissions to hospital for acute respiratory infection during 3,982,925 person-years of follow-up in Danish children aged 0 to 5 years. Data on child and family characteristics, childcare attendance, and hospitalizations were obtained from Danish registries. The outcome of the study was inpatient admissions to hospital for acute respiratory infection. Incidence rate ratios were estimated using Poisson regression. RESULTS: In children or = 3 years were 47%, 41%, and 8%, respectively. The incidence decreased after the first 6 months, and after > or = 1 year in childcare the incidence was comparable with that of children in home care. Similar patterns were seen after second enrollment. For 0- to 2-year-old children living in households with no additional children or = 2 additional children, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The increased risk of acute respiratory infection was most pronounced among 0- to 2-year-old children living with no other children during the first 6 months of enrollment. Our findings may suggest that it would be optimal to postpone enrollment into childcare until after 1 year of age.
AIM: Homeopathy is the form of complementary medicine most frequently used in Norway. This study describes complaints and characteristics of patients who visited Norwegian homeopaths in 1998, comparing them with those who visited homeopaths in 1985 and general practice patients. METHODS: We conducted a survey of 1097 patients visiting 80 Norwegian homeopaths in 1998 and compared them with a similar survey in 1985 (1072 consultations) and a 1989 survey of general practice patients (90,458 consultations). RESULTS: One in four of patients visiting homeopaths in 1998 were children between 0 and 9 years of age, compared to one in ten in 1985 and in general practice. Almost half of the patients in 1998 had used prescription drugs provided by a medical doctor the previous month for the same complaints they presented to the homeopath. In 1998 patients sought homeopathy most often because of respiratory and skin complaints. In 1985 the most common reasons were musculo-skeletal and digestive problems. Four of the five commonest reasons for encounter in homeopathic practice in 1998 were also found among the five commonest reasons for general practice consultations. CONCLUSION: Patients currently visiting homeopaths differ in age and to some extent in complaints compared to previous users of homeopathy and general practice patients.