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Asthma Strongly Associated With Chronic Rhinosinusitis

Prevalence of asthma varies widely across Europe, with highest rates in young adults

FRIDAY, Dec. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Asthma is strongly associated with chronic rhinosinusitis and its prevalence varies widely across Europe, according to the results of a multicenter, international study published in the January issue of Allergy.

Deborah Jarvis, M.B.B.S., M.R.C.P., M.D., of the Imperial College London, and colleagues with the Global Allergy and Asthma Network of Excellence conducted a survey of over 52,000 adults (aged 18 to 75 years) living in 19 centers throughout 12 European countries. Chronic rhinosinusitis was defined following the European Position Paper on Rhinosinusitis and Nasal Polyps criteria of having nasal blockage or nasal discharge and either facial pain or pressure or a reduction in sense of smell, with symptoms lasting for at least 12 weeks in the past year.

The researchers found that the geographical prevalence rate of reported asthma varied widely (5.2 to 16.8 percent), with a median prevalence rate of 8.6 percent. Overall, the prevalence of asthma was higher in younger age groups and among women. There was a strong association of asthma with chronic rhinosinusitis found in all centers.

"This large international survey has shown a wide variation in the prevalence of asthma across Europe and has shown a lower prevalence in the older age group, except in the former Soviet states and Finland. It has shown strong and independent associations between asthma and both rhinitis and chronic rhinosinusitis. Better understanding of these conditions and their interdependence may lead to better management," the authors write.

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