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New Findings On Asthma And Breastfeeding, Obesity And Asthma And Snoring And Pre-eclampsia At ALA/ATS Meeting

Physicians have commonly assumed that people with asthma may become overweight because their breathing problems limit their activity, according to Dr. Camargo. The new study suggests that the obesity precedes the development of asthma.

"This study suggests that obesity may explain some of the increase in asthma in Western countries in the last 20 years," he said. "It's interesting to note that in wealthier countries, the poorest people are the most likely to be obese and the most likely to have asthma, supporting the plausibility of the relationship between the two conditions."

Although very little research has yet been done to examine how obesity might lead to asthma, Dr. Camargo said it is possible that being overweight somehow compresses the airways, making them smaller and therefore more reactive to cats and other common asthma triggers.

The researchers measured obesity in terms of body mass index (BMI), a measure of how overweight someone is after taking into account their height. The higher the BMI the fatter the person.

Dr. Camargo plans to conduct another year of followup on the children in the study, and then will combine data from the children's and the mother's studies, to look for trends in environmental and genetic factors.

Snoring and Pre-eclampsia
Snoring, often a sign of partial airway obstruction, is associated with high blood pressure in pregnancy, a dangerous condition known as pre-eclampsia, according to a study presented at the conference. Pre-eclampsia is one of the leading causes of illness and death for pregnant women and their babies.

Dr. Colin Sullivan of the University of Sydney in Australia says the study suggests that partial upper airway obstruction may be responsible for a large portion of the nighttime increase in blood pressure in pre-eclampsia, and that treatment may minimize the obstruction and improve nighttime blood pressu
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Contact: Bill Glitz
wglitz@aol.com
619-525-6410
American Lung Association
26-Apr-1999


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