Prevalence of exercise-induced airway narrowing in schoolchildren from a Mediterranean town

Am Rev Respir Dis. 1993 May;147(5):1112-5. doi: 10.1164/ajrccm/147.5.1112.


A cross-sectional study was carried out on a random sample of 2,216 schoolchildren 9 to 14 yr of age to determine the prevalence of exercise-induced airway narrowing (EIAN) in a Mediterranean town (Mataró). A complementary case-control study measured the association between EIAN and respiratory symptoms. A free-running test was performed during school time. Peak expiratory flow rate (PEFR) was measured at rest and at 2, 5, 10, and 15 min after exercise. A total of 136 of 2,056 satisfactory runs showed a decrease of PEFR equal to or higher than 15% at each of these times after exercise. Five more children developed wheezing during running and were considered to have EIAN. Prevalence of EIAN was 6.9% (95% CI = 5.9 to 7.9). Prevalence decreased progressively with age. No sex difference was found. In the case-control study a questionnaire of respiratory symptoms was applied to the mothers of hyperresponsive children, as well as to two matched control subjects for each case. Questionnaire analysis showed a strong association between EIAN and respiratory symptoms or rhinitis. Association with bronchitis before 2 yr of age and parental asthma was less but significant.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Asthma, Exercise-Induced / epidemiology*
  • Bronchial Hyperreactivity / epidemiology*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Peak Expiratory Flow Rate
  • Physical Exertion*
  • Prevalence
  • Spain / epidemiology