Prevalence of the Respiratory Allergies among Adult Population in the City of Skopje in Relation to Climatic Change and Change in Pollen Micro Flora

DOI: 10.4236/jep.2012.310155   PDF   HTML     3,723 Downloads   5,447 Views   Citations


Introduction: Climate change may have an impact of prevalence and severity of respiratory allergies causing changes in the concentrations, distribution, dispersion patterns, and allergenic potential of aeroallergens in the environment. Objective: To assess the prevalence of atopy, sensitization to common pollen allergens, and respiratory allergies (allergic rhinitis and asthma) among adult population in the city of Skopje in relation to changes in pollen distributions caused by climate change and particularly maximum temperature, in the period 1996-2010. Methods: Aeropalinological measurements in the city of Skopje were performed by volumetric method in the period 1996-2009. Serial cross-sectional studies on the prevalence of atopy, sensitization to common pollen allergens, allergic rhinitis and asthma in adults by standardized methodology were conducted in defined critical periods (1996, 2003, 2007/2008 and 2009/2010). Evaluation of examined subjects included completion of a questionnaire, skin prick tests (SPT) to common inhalant allergens, and lung function tests. Results: Data from aeropalinological measurements showed differences in the pollen concentrations, as well as in the duration of pollen season for some pollen types. The prevalence of atopics was similar in all critical periods, and the prevalence of sensitization to common pollen allergens was slightly higher in the last study than in the study performed in 1996. We registered increase in the prevalence of allergic rhinitis in the examined period (11.5% in 1996 to 17.4% in 2009/2010) followed by increase in the prevalence of rhinitics sensitized to common pollen allergens. The prevalence of allergic asthma was significantly higher in the study conducted in 2009/2010 than in the study conducted in 1996 (5.1% vs. 2.1%, P = 0.037) followed by slightly higher prevalence of asthmatics sensitized to common pollen allergens in the same period. Conclusions: Registered changes in the prevalence of sensitization to common pollen allergens, as well as in the prevalence of subjects with respiratory allergies sensitized to these allergens, even statistically non-significant, indicate the need of further monitoring and investigation in order to assess the association between climate change with change in pollen micro flora and related allergic disorders.

Share and Cite:

J. Karadzinska-Bislimovska, J. Minov, V. Kendrovski, S. Milkovska, S. Stoleski and D. Mijakoski, "Prevalence of the Respiratory Allergies among Adult Population in the City of Skopje in Relation to Climatic Change and Change in Pollen Micro Flora," Journal of Environmental Protection, Vol. 3 No. 10, 2012, pp. 1364-1372. doi: 10.4236/jep.2012.310155.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] C. W. Brown and L. Hawkins, “Allergy Prevalence and Causal Factors in the Domestic Environment: Results of a Random Population Survey in the United Kingdom,” Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, Vol. 83, No. 3, 1999, pp. 240-244. doi:10.1016/S1081-1206(10)62647-6
[2] M. Kilpel?inen, E. O. Terho, H. Helenius and M. Kos- kenvuo, “Home Dampness, Current Allergic Diseases, and Respiratory Infections among Young Adults,” Thorax, Vol. 56, No. 6, 2001, pp. 462-467. doi:10.1136/thorax.56.6.462
[3] N. Ezova, V. Cvetanov, S. Milkovska, et al., “Charac- teristics of Allergic Rhinitis in R. Macedonia,” Makedonski Medicinski Pregled, Vol. 56, No. 3, 2003, pp. 142-143.
[4] A. Seaton, D. J. Godden and K. Brown, “Increase in As- thma: Is a More Toxic Environment, or a More Suscep- tible Population,” Thorax, Vol. 49, No. 2, 1994, pp. 171-174.doi:10.1136/thx.49.2.171
[5] C. Janson, P. Anto, P. Burney, et al., “The European Com- munity Respiratory Health Survey: What Are the Main Results So Far?” European Respiratory Journal, Vol. 18, No. 3, 2001, pp. 598-611.
[6] G. Viegi, I. Annesi and G. Matteelli, “Epidemiology of asthma,” European Respiratory Monograph, Vol. 8, No. 23, 2003, pp. 1-25.
[7] J. Karadzinska-Bislimovska, V. Cvetanov, J. Petrovska, et al., “Respiratory Symptoms and Positive Skin Prick Tests in a Prospective Asthma Study in Republic of Macedonia (Initial Results),” European Respiratory Journal, Vol. 14, No. 30, 1999, p. 78.
[8] J. Minov, V. Cvetanov, J. Karadzinska-Bilsimovska, et al., “Epidemiological Characteristics of Bronchial Asthma in R. Macedonia,” Makedonski Medicinski Pregled, Vol. 56, No. 3, 2003, p. 156.
[9] E. von Mutius and M. R. Sears, “Risk Factors for Development of Asthma,” European Respiratory Monograph, Vol. 8, No. 23, 2003, pp. 57-73.
[10] E. von Mutius and M. R. Seras, “Risk Factors for Development of Asthma,” European Respiratory Monograph, Vol. 8, No. 23, 2003, pp. 57-72.
[11] P. J. Beggs, “Impacts of Climate Change on Aeroallergens: Past and Future,” Clinical and Experimental Allergy, Vol. 34, No. 10, 2004, pp. 50-57.doi:10.1111/j.1365-2222.2004.02061.x
[12] P. J. Beggs and H. J. Bambrick, “Is the Global Rise of Asthma an Early Impact of Anthropogenic Climate Change?” Environmental Health Perspectives, Vol. 113, No. 8, 2005, pp. 915-919. doi:10.1289/ehp.7724
[13] C. E. Reid and J. L. Gamble, “Aeroallergens, Allergic Disease, and Climate Change: Impacts and Adaptation,” Ecohealth, Vol. 6, No. 3, 2009, pp. 458-470.doi:10.1007/s10393-009-0261-x
[14] J. J. McCarthy, O. F. Canziani, N. A. Leary, D. J. Dokken and K. S. White, “Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Climate Change 2001: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability,” Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2001.
[15] K. Bergant, “Climate Change Scenarios for Macedonia-Re- view of Methodology and Results,” University of Nova Gorica, Nova Gorica, 2006, pp. 3-4.
[16] V. Kendrovski, S. Milkovska, J. K. Bislimovska, J. Mi- nov, M. Spasenovska and M. K. Hristovska, “The Im- pacts of Maximum Temperature and Climate Change to Current and Future Pollen Distribution in Skopje, Republic of Macedonia,” TAF Preventive Medicine Bulletin, Vol. 11, No. 1, 2012, pp. 35-40. doi:10.5455/pmb.20110504050151
[17] A. Minette, “Questionnaire of the European Community for Coal and Steel (ECSC) on Respiratory Symptoms. 1987—Updating of the 1962 and 1967 Questionnaires for Studying Chronic Bronchitis and Emphysema,” European Respiratory Journal, Vol. 2, No. 2, 1989, pp. 165-177.
[18] European Community Respiratory Health Survey, “Varia- tions in the Prevalence of Respiratory Symptoms, Self- Reported Asthma Attacks, and Use of Asthma Medication in the European Respiratory Health Survey (ECRHS),” European Respiratory Journal, Vol. 9, 1996, pp. 687-695. doi:10.1183/09031936.96.09040687
[19] The European Academy of Allergology and Clinical Immunology, “Position Paper: Allergen Standardization and Skin Tests,” Allergy, Vol. 48, No. 14, 1993, pp. 48-82.
[20] Quajner Standardization of Lung Function Tests—1993 Update, “Report Working Party for the European Community for Steel and Coal. Official Statement of the European Respiratory Society,” European Respiratory Journal, Vol. 16, No. l, 1993, pp. 1-100.
[21] P. J. Sterk, L. M. Fabbri, D. W. Quanjer, et al., “Airway Responsiveness-Standardized Challenge Testing with Pharmacological, Physical and Senzitizing Stimuli in Adults,” European Respiratory Journal, Vol. 6, No. 16, 1993, pp. 53- 83.
[22] American Thoracic Society, “Guidelines for Methacholine and Exercise Challenge Testing—1999,” American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, Vol. 161, No. 1, 2000, pp. 309-329.
[23] S. Blonshine, “Assessing the Bronchodilator Response,” 2010. http://www.
[24] A. J. Frew, “Allergic Basis of Asthma,” European Respiratory Monograph, Vol. 23, No. 8, 2003, pp. 74-83.
[25] P. Beggs, “Adaptation to Impacts of Climate Change on Aeroallergens and Allergic Respiratory Diseases,” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Vol. 7, No. 8, 2010, pp. 3006-3021. doi:10.3390/ijerph7083006
[26] G. D’Amato and L. Cecchi, “Effects of Climate Change on Environmental Factors in Respiratory Allergic Dis- eases,” Clinical and Experimental Allergy, Vol. 38, No. 8, 2008, pp. 1264-1274. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2222.2008.03033.x
[27] D. H. Katz, “Regulation of the IgE System: Experimental and Clinic Aspects,” Allergy, Vol. 39, No. 2, 1984, pp. 81-106. doi:10.1111/j.1398-9995.1984.tb01940.x
[28] G. D. Nielsen, J. S. Hansen, R. M. Lund, et al., “IgE-Mediated Asthma and Rhinitis: A Role of Allergen Exposure?” Pharmacology & Toxicology, Vol. 90, No. 5, 2002, pp. 231-242. doi:10.1034/j.1600-0773.2002.900502.x
[29] S. G. Johanson, J. O. Hourihane, J. Bousquet, et al., “A Revised Nomenclature for Allergy,” Allergy, Vol. 56, No. 9, 2001, pp. 813-822.doi:10.1034/j.1398-9995.2001.t01-1-00001.x
[30] J. S. Fowler and B. J. Lipworth, “Relationship of Skin Prick Reactivity to Aeroallergens and Hyperrespons- iveness to Challenges with Metacholine and Adenosine Monophosphate,” Allergy, Vol. 58, No. 1, 2003, pp. 46- 51. doi:10.1034/j.1398-9995.2003.23779.x
[31] M. L. Burr, “Grass Pollen: Trends and Predictions,” Clinical and Experimental Allergy, Vol. 29, No. 6, 1999, pp. 735-738. doi:10.1046/j.1365-2222.1999.00621.x
[32] V. Cvetanov, S. Milkovska, S. Risteska-Kuc, et al., “Epidemiological Characteristics of Allergic Diseases in R. Macedonia,” Makedonski Medicinski Pregled, Vol. 56, No. 3, 2003 pp. 140- 141.
[33] J. Sunyer, J. M. Anto, M. Kogevinas, et al., “Risk Factors for Asthma in Young Adults. Spanish Group of the Euro- pean Community Respiratory Health Survey,” European Respiratory Journal, Vol. 10, No. 11, 1997, pp. 2490- 2494. doi:10.1183/09031936.97.10112490
[34] J. Sunyer, J. Soriano, J. M. Anto, et al., “Sensitization to Individual Allergens as Risk Factors for Lower FEV1 in Young Adults. European Community Respiratory Health Survey,” International Journal of Epidemiology, Vol. 29, No. 1, 2000, pp. 125-130. doi:10.1093/ije/29.1.125
[35] W. Phipatanakul, “Allergic Rhinoconjunctivitis: Epide- miology,” Immunology and Allergy Clinics of North America, Vol. 25, No. 2, 2005, pp. 263-281.doi:10.1016/j.iac.2005.03.001
[36] R. G. Hamilton and P. A. Eggleston, “Environmental Al- lergen Analyses,” Methods, Vol. 13, No. 1, 1997, pp. 53- 60. doi:10.1006/meth.1997.0495
[37] S. Chinn, D. Jarvis, C. Luczynska and P. Burney, “Indi- vidual Allergens as Risk Factors for Bronchial Respon- siveness in Young Adults,” Thorax, Vol. 53, No. 8, 1998, pp. 662-667. doi:10.1136/thx.53.8.662
[38] C. Neukrich, C. Henry, B. Leynaert, et al., “Is Sensitiza- tion to Alternaria Alternata a Risk Factor for Severe Asthma? A Population-Based Study,” Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Vol. 103, No. 4, 1999, pp. 709-711.
[39] R. K. Bush and J. J. Prochnau, “Alternaria-iNDUCED ASTHMA,” Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Vol. 113, No. 2, 2004, pp. 227-234.doi:10.1016/j.jaci.2003.11.023
[40] H. A. Burge, “An Update on Pollen and Fungal Spore Aerobiology,” Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Vol. 110, No. 4, 2002, pp. 544-552.doi:10.1067/mai.2002.128674
[41] J. K. Peat, M. Haby, J. Spijker, et al., “Prevalence of Asthma in Adults in Busselton, Western Australia,” BMJ, Vol. 305, 1992, pp. 1326-1329.doi:10.1136/bmj.305.6865.1326

comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2020 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.