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Predicting the development of childhood asthma 

Predicting the development of childhood asthma
Predicting the development of childhood asthma

Dennis Ownby

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date: 02 March 2021

Castro-Rodríguez et al. used longitudinal data from the Tucson Children’s Respiratory Study to develop two indices for the prediction of asthma. A ‘stringent’ index included frequent wheezing during the first 3 years of life and either one major risk factor (parental history of asthma or eczema) or two of three minor risk factors (eosinophilia, wheezing without colds, and allergic rhinitis). A ‘loose’ index was based on any wheezing during the first 3 years of life plus the same combination of risk factors as for the stringent index. The authors found that the stringent index had an acceptable positive predictive value and a high specificity, but low sensitivity. The loose index had a much higher sensitivity but lower specificity and positive predictive values. The negative predictive value at all ages was very high for both indices. The authors conclude that the indices provide a reasonably accurate method of predicting subsequent development of asthma in young children with wheeze, using data that can be easily collected in clinical practice.

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