Asthma Risk Varies Among Hispanic Groups After Relocation to the U.S. Interview with:

Elina Jerschow, M.D., M.Sc., FAAAAI, FACAAI Associate Professor of Medicine, Allergy/ Immunology Division Director, Drug Allergy Center Montefiore Medical Center The University Hospital for Albert Einstein College of Medicine Bronx, New York 10461

Dr. Elina Jerschow

Elina Jerschow, M.D., M.Sc., FAAAAI, FACAAI
Associate Professor of Medicine, Allergy/ Immunology Division
Director, Drug Allergy Center
Montefiore Medical Center
The University Hospital for Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Bronx, New York 10461 What is the background for this study?

Response: Asthma prevalence varies across and within countries, and markedly increased rates of asthma have been observed in recent decades. Recent time-trends may be attributed to increased urbanization and dissemination of a Western lifestyle.

In the US, asthma disproportionally affects African-Americans and Hispanics/Latinos living in urban areas. Among Hispanics/Latinos, asthma prevalence varies from 5.7 % for Mexicans/Mexican-Americans to 16.5% for Puerto Ricans. Besides national background, US nativity, longer duration of US residence, and having one or two parents born in the US have been previously reported as acculturation-related risk factors for asthma in foreign born children. Asthma prevalence was also higher in foreign-born Latinos who relocated to the US as children. What are the main findings?

Response: Study results indicate that US nativity and US residence were not uniformly associated with asthma among various US Hispanic/Latino groups. While those born in the Dominican Republic and Mexico experienced an increase in asthma incidence after migration to the US, there was little evidence for a relationship between relocation to the US mainland and increased asthma among Cubans or Central/South Americans. The results also suggested that among Mexican and Dominican immigrants to the US, asthma risk over time approaches that of their US-born counterparts. In contrast to other immigrant groups, the incidence of asthma among Cubans may have decreased (rather than increased) after moving to the US. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: The effect of relocation to the US on asthma risk was not uniform across different groups of Hispanics/Latinos. While asthma risk increased after relocation among some Latinos (Dominicans and Mexicans), it decreased in Cubans or did not significantly change in Central/South Americans. The association between relocation to the US and asthma in Puerto Ricans was not strong, suggesting that other factors play a role in asthma development, and that these findings cannot be explained by early age at immigration alone. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: These results may have implications in formulating preventive strategies specific to the US Hispanic/Latino population. Further research is needed to uncover modifiable asthma risk factors that explain heterogeneities identified here.

No disclosures Thank you for your contribution to the community.


Effect of Relocation to the U.S. on Asthma Risk Among Hispanics
Jerschow, Elina et al.
American Journal of Preventive Medicine , Volume 0 , Issue 0 ,

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

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Last Updated on February 8, 2017 by Marie Benz MD FAAD