Title: Respiratory symptoms of school children and their home environment in Northern Transdanubia, Hungary

Authors: Peter Rudnai, Mihaly J. Varro, Annamaria Macsik, Eszter Szabo, Maria Benyi

Addresses: National Institute of Environmental Health, Gyali ut 2-6, H-1097 Budapest, Hungary. ' National Institute of Environmental Health, Gyali ut 2-6, H-1097 Budapest, Hungary. ' National Institute of Environmental Health, Gyali ut 2-6, H-1097 Budapest, Hungary. ' National Institute of Environmental Health, Gyali ut 2-6, H-1097 Budapest, Hungary. ' National Centre for Healthcare Audit and Inspection, Vaci ut 174, H-1138 Budapest, Hungary

Abstract: This cross-sectional study covering all children visiting third grade classes with more than ten children in any elementary school of Hungary used parent-completed questionnaires on the children|s present and past health condition, the parents| respiratory health and smoking habits, the home environment and the families| socio-economic status. Around 6670 children from the Northern-Transdanubian region were included in the present analysis using multiple logistic regression. The prevalence of children with bronchitic and asthmatic symptoms was 14.7% and 16.6%, respectively. The prevalence of asthma ever diagnosed by a physician was 7.2% and that of a doctor-diagnosed allergy was 21.3%. Heating with coal or wood, industrial emissions in the neighbourhood, outdoor and indoor use of pesticides, air conditioners, new wallpaper or plastic floor cover and carpets in the child|s room and mould growth were found to be the strongest determinants of respiratory or allergic symptoms of the children in the home.

Keywords: school children; respiratory symptoms; asthma; parent smoking; smoking habits; child health; elementary schools; Hungary; bronchitic symptoms; environmental health; allergic symptoms.

DOI: 10.1504/IJENVH.2008.020930

International Journal of Environment and Health, 2008 Vol.2 No.3/4, pp.386 - 396

Available online: 24 Oct 2008 *

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