Regional variations in risk factors for asthma in school children: RESULTS (1)

Participation in both communities was excellent; 88.9% in Swift Current and 94.2% in Estevan. The sex distribution was similar between Swift Current and Estevan (49.9% and 49.5% female, respectively). The prevalence of personal characteristics by town is presented in Table 1. A significantly higher proportion of children in Swift Current had a parent with more than a grade 12 education compared with children in Estevan, and a significantly lower proportion of children in Swift Current came from homes with two parents. ventolin inhalers
A significantly higher proportion of children in Estevan compared with Swift Current reported the presence of home mould or dampness, an air conditioner in the home, a dehumidifier in the home and gas heating (Table 2). A significantly lower proportion of children in Estevan reported the presence of a humidifier compared with Swift Current. The level of crowding and mean percentage of lifetime spent living in their present community was significantly greater in Estevan than in Swift Current.

TABLE 1 Distribution of personal characteristics in the towns of Swift Current and Estevan, Saskatchewan

Swift Current (n=1077) (%) Estevan (n=961)(%) P
Caucasian 94.3 95.6 0.18
Parents with >high school 63.3 58.0 0.01
education
Living in a two-parent home 84.3 88.0 0.02
Report of a respiratory allergy 27.6 27.5 0.96
Report of an early 11.8 9.6 0.11
respiratory illness
Family history of asthma 11.7 11.0 0.64
Birthweight > 2500 g 93.9 93.2 0.60
Born premature 16.7 16.8 0.98
Breastfed 75.2 71.8 0.08
Mean ± SD age (years) 8.74±1.76 8.68±1.78 0.52

TABLE 2 Distribution of indoor environmental characteristics in the towns of Swift Current and Estevan, Saskatchewan

Swift Current (n=1077) (%) Estevan (n=961) (%) P
ETS exposure from the mother Never 59.8 58.7
Previous 10.8 12.1
Current 29.4 29.2 0.65
ETS exposure from the father Never 57.6 52.2
Previous 11.1 13.0
Current 31.3 34.8 0.05
Urban residence 94.4 95.0 0.56
Presence of home 19.8 26.7 <0.001
mould or dampness Ever owned a pet 66.9 64.1 0.19
Presence of a home air conditioner 48.4 76.1 <0.001
Presence of a home air filter 29.0 30.9 0.34
Presence of a home humidifier 30.5 26.2 0.04
Presence of a home dehumidifier 5.1 9.6 <0.001
Presence of a home fireplace 30.0 29.6 0.72
Gas heating 86.8 91.2 <0.01
Electrical heating 8.0 7.7 0.81
Single-family house 88.1 86.1 0.17
Mean ± SD crowding 0.65±0.27 0.67±0.28 0.05
Mean ± SD % time spent in location 0.79±0.32 0.84±0.30 <0.01
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