Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Pre-pregnancy overweight may program teen asthma symptoms

Date:
August 16, 2011
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
Moms who are overweight or obese when they become pregnant may be programming their children to have asthma -- like respiratory symptoms during adolescence, suggests new research.

Mums who are overweight or obese when they become pregnant may be programming their children to have asthma-like respiratory symptoms during adolescence, suggests research published online in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

The prevalence of children's asthma has risen substantially worldwide, since the 1970s, and up to 37% of teenagers may have asthma symptoms, making it one of the most common childhood long term conditions, say the authors.

The reasons for this increase are unclear, but environmental factors are likely to have a key role, they say, adding that the prevalence of overweight/obesity among women at the time they enter pregnancy has also increased dramatically over the past few decades.

In a bid to find out if there was any potential link between these factors, the research team assessed the respiratory health of just under 7,000 15 and 16 year olds, all of whom were born in northern Finland between July 1985 and June 1986.

Their mums had been questioned on their lifestyle, social background, and educational attainment when they were 12 weeks pregnant. Information had also been collected by midwives on the occasion of their first antenatal visit. This included height and weight before pregnancy and parental medical history.

One in 10 of the teens wheezed and one in five had wheezed at some point; similarly, 6% had asthma and one in 10 had had asthma at some point.

Several early life factors were significantly associated with subsequent respiratory symptoms, the findings showed.

These included extremes of birthweight; being brought up by a single parent; a genetic predisposition; and being a smoker or having a mum who smoked during pregnancy.

A mum's weight before she became pregnant also had a bearing on wheeze/asthma risk, and remained so, even after accounting for these other factors.

Teens whose mums had been seriously overweight or obese before they became pregnant were between 20% and 30% more likely to wheeze/have wheezed or have asthma currently or previously.

When a mother's weight was looked at by kilogram per height, the association with wheeze and asthma in adolescents became highly significant, amounting to an increased risk for every extra kilogram of weight of between 2.7% and 3.5%.

Teens whose mums were among the heaviest, were 47% more likely to have severe wheeze after taking account of factors likely to influence the results.

The authors point out that their findings do not show that pre-pregnancy obesity definitely causes respiratory symptoms among teenagers, but they point to other research showing links between maternal obesity and respiratory symptoms in infants and young children, as well as numerous complications during pregnancy.

They suggest that overweight may interfere with normal fetal development as a result of disrupted metabolic, hormonal, or ovarian activity.

Increasing weight is also linked to increasing levels of the hormone leptin, receptors for which are found in the lung of the developing fetus.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Swatee P Patel, Alina Rodriguez, Mark P Little, Paul Elliott, Juha Pekkanen, Anna-Liisa Hartikainen, Anneli Pouta, Jaana Laitinen, Terttu Harju, Dexter Canoy, Marjo-Riitta Jδrvelin. Associations between pre-pregnancy obesity and asthma symptoms in adolescents. J Epidemiol Community Health, 15 August 2011 DOI: 10.1136/jech.2011.133777

Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Pre-pregnancy overweight may program teen asthma symptoms." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 August 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110815191416.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2011, August 16). Pre-pregnancy overweight may program teen asthma symptoms. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110815191416.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Pre-pregnancy overweight may program teen asthma symptoms." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110815191416.htm (accessed September 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) — The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) — A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
How The 'Angelina Jolie Effect' Increased Cancer Screenings

How The 'Angelina Jolie Effect' Increased Cancer Screenings

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) — Angelina's Jolie's decision to undergo a preventative mastectomy in 2013 inspired many women to seek early screenings for the disease. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Cost of Ebola

The Cost of Ebola

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 18, 2014) — As Sierra Leone prepares for a three-day "lockdown" in its latest bid to stem the spread of Ebola, Ciara Lee looks at the financial implications of fighting the largest ever outbreak of the disease. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins