During May 1986, a survey to assess the frequency of allergic disorders was conducted among primary school children of Alghero, Sardinia, using a structured self-administered questionnaire. The following problems were investigated: allergic conjunctivitis, asthma, wheezing, allergic rhinitis, urticaria and eczema. Of the original 1823 questionnaires distributed, 1961 (92.8%) were completed by parents and returned. Overall, 238 children (14.1%) were reported to have shown at least one episode of one or more of the above and were regarded as 'allergic'. Among the potential risk factors investigated, statistically significant differences (P less than 0.05) between allergic and non-allergic children were only found for history of allergy in at least one parent (odds ratio, OR = 2.2) and exposure to passive smoking (OR = 1.4).