This study was published in Pediatric Pulmonology medical journal in 2006, and was conducted by Dr. Ibrahim A. Janahi, head of pediatric pulmonary department in Hamad general Hospital, The aim of the present study is to determine the prevalence of asthma and allergic diseases among schoolchildren aged 6–14 years in the State of Qatar.
The study was a cross-sectional study conducted on 3,283 school children living in both urban and rural areas (average age, 9.03_1.99 years;52.3% boys and 47.7% girls) and was conducted between February 2003–February 2004.
The population sample had a high prevalence of diagnosed asthma (19.8%), allergic rhinitis (30.5%),eczema (22.5%), and chest infection (11.9%). The frequency of asthma, allergic rhinitis, and eczema among parents reflected the same pattern as seen in their children.
The prevalence rate of asthma (19.8%) in Qatari schoolchildren is very close to that in the neighbouring Gulf country, Oman (20.7%), and higher than in some developing countries. Genetic factors related to the high rates of consanguinity may play an important role in the high prevalence rates noted in the Qatari population, but changes in lifestyle and environmental factors cannot be discounted as possible causes of the high Prevalence noted in this study.