Studies suggest an increased all-cause mortality among adults with asthma. We aimed to study the relationship between asthma in children and young adults and all-cause mortality, and investigate differences in mortality rate by also having a life-limiting condition (LLC) or by parental socioeconomic status (SES).
Included in this register-based study are 2 775 430 individuals born in Sweden between January 1986 and December 2012. We identified asthma cases using the National Patient Register (NPR) and the Prescribed Drug Register. Those with LLC were identified using the NPR. Parental SES at birth (income and education) was retrieved from Statistics Sweden. We estimated the association between asthma and all-cause mortality using a Cox proportional hazards regression model. Effect modification by LLC or parental SES was studied using interaction terms in the adjusted model.
The adjusted hazard rate (adjHR) for all-cause mortality in asthma cases versus non-asthma cases was 1.46 (95% CI 1.33 to 1.62). The highest increased rate appeared to be for those aged 5-15 years. In persons with asthma and without LLC, the adjHR remained increased at 1.33 (95% CI 1.18 to 1.50), but differed (p=0.002) from those with asthma and LLC, with an adjHR of 1.87 (95% CI 1.57 to 2.22). Parental SES did not alter the association (income, p=0.55; education, p=0.83).
This study shows that asthma is associated with an increased mortality in children and young adults regardless of LLC or parental SES. Further research is warranted to investigate the possible mechanisms for this association.