Background: Sensitization is associated with the exacerbation, severity, and prognosis of allergic diseases in children OBJECTIVE: We characterized the association between sensitization patterns and allergic diseases.
Methods: A cohort of 548 children was enrolled from Panel Study of Korean Children (PSKC) study. Skin prick tests (SPTs) for 18 common allergens, blood tests, and methacholine bronchial challenge tests were performed at age 7. The Korean version of International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC) questionnaire was used.
Results: The sensitization rate on SPTs was 46.4%. Sensitization to indoor allergens showed an association with symptoms of asthma (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 2.39; 95% confidence intervals [95% CIs], 1.10-5.23), allergic rhinitis (AR, aOR 2.08, 95% CIs 1.42-3.06), and atopic dermatitis (AD, aOR 2.36, 95% CIs 1.24-4.50) in the preceding 12 months. In contrast, sensitization to outdoor allergens was associated with AR diagnosis only (aOR 2.40, 95% CIs 1.30-4.41). The number of sensitized allergens was associated with a lifetime diagnosis and symptoms in the preceding 12 months of AR and asthma, but not with AD or BHR. A higher degree of sensitization to indoor allergens was associated with symptoms in the preceding 12 months of asthma, AR, AD, and that for outdoor allergens was associated with symptoms in the prior 12 months of asthma and AR.
Conclusion: The sensitization patterns including allergen type, number, and degree of sensitization are helpful for interpreting the association between sensitization and allergic diseases and identifying the pathophysiologies and diverse phenotypes of allergic diseases.