Study in Thorax by Phoa et al on development of childhood asthma and presence of gas heaters and cookers in Australia

Phoa LL, Toelle BG, Ng K, Marks GB. 2004. Efffects of gas and other fume emitting heaters on the development of asthma during childhood. Thorax, 59: 741-745. This was an Australian cross-sectional study– conducted at one point in time– of 8-11 year old school children (n=627). Parents answered a questionnaire about their children’s symptoms and their homes (heating and cooking sources). Quantitative measures of atopy (skin prick tests) and airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR; histamine challenge tests) were conducted on study children. The presence of fume emitting heaters during the first year of life was statistically significantly associated with an increased relative risk of AHR, recent wheeze, and recent wheeze+AHR, but not atopy. NOTE: the measures of exposure were qualitative indicators, not quantitative measures of nitrogen oxides, particles, or volatile organic compounds associated with fuel combustion, which each have been associated with prevalence of asthma symptoms and attacks. Please see CAFA’s science-based Briefing Kit fact sheets for more information at: //