Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Dampness key cause of asthma in children

Thursday 27 June 2013

Dampness key cause of asthma in children

The largest-ever worldwide study of the link between damp homes and respiratory and allergic conditions has significant implications for New Zealand children’s health.

The study is from phase two of a worldwide collaboration, the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC), involving 46,000 children in 20 countries, and provides extensive evidence that living in damp or mouldy homes is associated with asthma, allergies, hay fever and eczema. 

Levels of house dust mites were also higher in damp homes and children were more likely to become allergic to house dust mites in damp homes, but the increased levels of house dust mites were not associated with wheezing.

Instead, it is dampness itself that appears to be the problem, say University of Otago, Wellington (UOW) researchers involved in the study.

 “The associations were found regardless of how affluent the countries were,  and were not associated with allergy itself, suggesting that these effects are not as a result of allergy to moulds or house dust mites,” UOW researcher Professor Julian Crane says.

Furthermore, if a child already has asthma it is made more severe by dampness and mould in the home, he says.

The study, which included a New Zealand centre, has significant implications for New Zealand and the current emphasis on children’s health and welfare, says Professor Crane. 

“It is perhaps not surprising given this data that we have so much serious respiratory illness in children in New Zealand - we have such poor quality housing and so many children living in damp, cold, mouldy poorly heated often rented accommodation.”

He says Government and health professionals have largely ignored these problems until recently and hopes the study will prompt further action.

“For the respiratory health of children - which is the major cause of hospital admissions and time lost from school - dampness and mould is the rogue elephant in their homes. Dry warm homes would significantly reduce this major disease burden.”

The study has been published in the latest issue of Clinical and Experimental Allergy.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Research: ‘Ageing Well’ Science Challenge Launched

Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce today launched the Ageing Well National Science Challenge, confirming initial funding of $14.6 million. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Govt Resisting Pressure To Pump More Cash Into Solid Energy

Prime Minister John Key says it is “not the government’s preferred option” to make a fresh capital injection into the troubled state-owned coal miner, Solid Energy, but dodged journalists’ questions at his weekly press conference on whether that might prove necessary... More>>

ALSO:

Lagest Ever Privacy Breach Award: NZCU Baywide Accepts “Severe” Censure In Cake Case

NZCU Baywide says that once it was found to have committed a breach of a former staff member’s privacy, it had attempted to resolve the matter... the censure and remedies for its actions taken almost three years ago are “severe” but accepted, and will hopefully draw a line under the matter. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: PayPal Stops Processing Mega Payments; NZX Listing Still On

PayPal has ceased processing payments for Mega, the file storage and encryption firm looking to join the New Zealand stock market via a reverse listing of TRS Investments, amid claims it is not a legitimate cloud storage service. More>>

ALSO:

Housing Policy: Auckland Densification As Popular As Ebola, English Says

Finance Minister Bill English said calls by the Reserve Bank Governor for more densification in Auckland’s housing were “about as popular in parts of Auckland as Ebola” would be. More>>

ALSO:

Crown Accounts: NZ Government Deficit Smaller Than Expected In First Half

The New Zealand government's operating deficit was smaller than expected in the first six months of the financial year, as the consumption and corporate tax take rose ahead of forecast in December, having lagged estimates in previous months. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news