Objective: This study sought to determine the effects of exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) and childhood cigarette smoking on asthma symptoms in middle-school children in North Carolina.
Methods: n 1999-2000, information was collected in a survey completed by the children. Outcomes of asthma symptom reporting were regressed on tobacco smoke exposures.
Results: Children who currently smoke or report any exposure to ETS were at increased risk of reporting active asthma symptoms, in a dosedependant fashion. Exposure to ETS and childhood cigarette smoking were responsible for 18% of the cases of asthma in the study population and $1.62 million dollars in excess medical expenditures.
Conclusion: Childhood cigarette smoking and exposure to ETS are independently associated with asthmatic symptoms, even at low levels of exposure.
(C) 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.