Asthma and allergies in schoolchildren of Maputo

Allergy. 2007 Mar;62(3):265-71. doi: 10.1111/j.1398-9995.2006.01251.x.


Aim: The study aimed to determine prevalence and severity of asthma, rhinitis and eczema in Maputo, Mozambique.

Methods: The International Study of Asthma and Allergies (ISAAC) protocol was applied in 27 schools in urban, suburban and semi-rural areas.

Results: A total of 2630 completed questionnaires were obtained from students aged 13-14 years, and 2383 from schoolchildren aged 6-7 years. The prevalence of current asthma was 13.3% in the two groups, the prevalence of rhinoconjuctivitis and eczema was 23% and 10% in teenagers and 8.8% and 8.5% respectively in children 6-7 years old. Overall, 35% of the adolescents and 23.8% of children were found to have at least one atopic condition or asthma in the last year. In symptomatic adolescents, the conditions were: rhinoconjuctivitis (41.3%), asthma (20%) and eczema (12.4%). In symptomatic children, asthma was the principal condition (36.2%), followed by eczema (20.3%) and rhinoconjunctivitis (19.1%). In adolescents, asthma was more frequently associated with rhinoconjuctivitis (28%). About 4% of all surveyed children had three atopic conditions associated. In adolescents, past year rhinitis was more frequent and severe in the urban area. Hay fever was commoner in the semi-urban area. Eczema was significantly more recurrent in suburban and semi-rural area. Exercise-induced wheeze, nocturnal cough and ever asthma were more reported in children of suburban area.

Conclusion: Asthma and allergic diseases are important public health problems in Maputo and improvement in prevention and management plans are required.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Comorbidity
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Dermatitis, Atopic / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Health Surveys*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mozambique / epidemiology
  • Prevalence
  • Random Allocation
  • Respiratory Hypersensitivity / epidemiology*
  • Rural Population
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Urban Population