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Self-reported asthma prevalence and control in a population-based cohort of Australian school students aged 10–14 years
  1. Rubina Hameed1,
  2. Rachel L Peters1,2,
  3. Michael J Field1,
  4. Jennifer J Koplin1,3,
  5. Shyamali C Dharmage3,
  6. Katrina J Allen1,2,3,4
  7. The SchoolNuts investigators.
  1. 1 Population health, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Parkville, Victoria, Australia
  2. 2 Department of Paediatrics, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  3. 3 Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  4. 4 Department of Allergy and Immunology, Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Dr Katrina J Allen, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Royal Children’s Hospital, Parkville, VIC 3052, Australia; katie.allen{at}

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The prevalence of asthma in Australian children is one of the highest in the world, as reported by the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood.1 Poorly controlled asthma has an increased risk of future exacerbations, emergency attendances and poor quality of life, and is a leading cause of school absenteeism and poor academic outcomes. We sought to examine the prevalence and control of asthma in Australian adolescents.

From 2011 to 2014 a population-based, cross-sectional, stratified, cluster sampling of primary and secondary school students in greater metropolitan Melbourne was used to recruit a sample of students aged 10–14 years as part of the SchoolNuts study. Of the 229 schools contacted, 117 (51.1%) participated in the study. Among the 20 965 eligible students in the participating schools, a questionnaire which included questions on asthma and asthma control was completed by 9663 (46.1%) students.2

The prevalence of self-reported asthma ever was 26.9% (95% CI 26.0 to 27.8) and self-reported current asthma …

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  • RH and RLP contributed equally.

  • Contributors RH and RLP analysed the data and drafted the manuscript. KJA conceived the study and contributed to interpretation of data and drafting of the manuscript. SCD, JJK and MJF contributed to the design of the study, interpretation of data and drafting of the manuscript. All authors approved the version published.

  • Funding The SchoolNuts study was supported by funding from the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (NHMRC grant 1047396) and the Victorian Government’s Operational Infrastructure Support Program.

  • Competing interests KJA personally received consultancy fees from ThermoFisher, and is on the Before Brands Scientific Advisory Board. The rest of the authors declare that they have no relevant conflicts of interest.

  • Patient consent Not required.

  • Ethics approval The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne Human Research Ethics Committee (31079I).

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

  • Collaborators The SchooNuts investigators include Mimi L.K. Tang,Susan Sawyer, Lyle C. Gurrin, George Patton, Jo Douglass, and Peter Vuillermin

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