Prevalence of asthma symptoms in athletes in the region of Gdansk (Poland) K Kuziemski, K Specjalski, W Słomiński, L Górska, E Jassem, R Kalicka, MJ Słomiński Biol Sport 2009; 26(3):275-284 ICID: 894792
Article type: Original article
IC™ Value: 9.80
Abstract provided by Publisher
Background: Continuous growth in the prevalence of obstructive diseases, including asthma, has been observed in recent years. The increase is observed both in subjects not practicing any sport and in professional athletes. In the latter asthma is surely underestimated. The aim of the study was to evaluate the prevalence of asthma symptoms in athletes in region of Gdańsk (Poland). Materials and Methods: Young sportsmen from the Centre of Sport Medicine in Gdansk were included in the study between 2005 and 2006. Data were collected during routine prophylactic visits. International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (IUATLD) Asthma Questionnaire was used to evaluate the prevalence of asthma symptoms. Questionnaire was enriched by questions concerning age, gender, sports practiced, training experience, influence of physical activity, smoking, coexistence of other allergic diseases. Results: 376 athletes, including 128 females (34%) and 248 males (66%), aged 14-27 years (mean age 17 years, SD±2.71) were examined. At least one exercise-related asthma symptom was observed in 38 athletes (10.1%). The most common symptoms were: chest tightness (31.9%), dyspnoea after exercise (29.8%), cough (21.3%), wheezing (17%). Coexistence of other allergic diseases (allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis) was revealed in 46 patients (12.2%). Smoking was reported by 38 athletes (10.1%, 33 males, 5 females) including 31daily smokers (8.2%) and 7 occasional smokers (1.9%). All daily smokers reported symptoms of exercise-induced asthma. Symptoms were significantly more common in subjects under age of 18 (23 subjects – 6.1%) than older ones (15 subjects – 4.0%) (P<0.001, χ2 Pearson test=14.04) and in females compared to males (P<0.05, χ2 Pearson test = 4.79). Conclusion: Symptoms of asthma are frequent among the athletes in the northern region of Poland, particularly in subjects under 18. Smoking and other coexisting allergic factors might be associated with symptoms of asthma in athletes of Gdansk. Questionnaire studies are helpful in detection of asthma symptoms.