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Mice trigger wheeze among children

Children whose parents have asthma or allergies and who are exposed to mice, or to the allergens they carry, are at risk for developing wheezing.

Mice trigger wheeze among children

Children whose parents have asthma or allergies and who are exposed to mice, or to the allergens they carry, are at risk for developing wheezing. Few studies have examined the health effects of mouse allergen in young children. To study the relation between mouse allergen exposure and wheezing, allergy and asthma among children, researchers from America identified 498 children who had parents with a history of asthma or allergies and followed them from birth to 7 years of age. The parents were surveyed to assess mouse exposure. Dust samples were collected at age 2 to 3 months and were tested for mouse allergen levels. Allergy skin testing was performed at an average age of 7 years in 248 children. Overall, 103 infants lived in homes with reported signs of mice during the first year of life. The authors reported that mouse allergen was detectable in 31.7 percent of kitchens and 33.3 percent of living rooms. An association was found between parents' reports of mouse exposure and transient wheeze, but not with persistent wheeze and late-onset wheeze. It was also noted that early life mouse exposure was not predictive of asthma, eczema, or hayfever at 7 years of age. However, infants who lived in homes with detectable levels of mouse allergen at age 2 to 3 months had a two-fold increased risk of having an allergy at school age. The above findings indicate that exposure to mouse allergen may be important in exacerbating current asthma disease symptoms and general allergy later on in life.
Allergy
November 2008
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