Pet Allergies May Mean Asthma Will Last Longer

Swedish researchers followed seven- and eight-year-olds with asthma through their teens and among those with the combination of severe asthma and animal allergies as kids, 82 percent still had asthma at age 19.

"Asthma is a dynamic condition which often remits but also frequently relapses," said lead author Dr. Martin Andersson of The OLIN Studies, Norrbotten County Council in Luleí¥, Sweden.

Risk factors for asthma are complex and make it hard to predict which kids with wheezing or shortness of breath will still have those problems years later, Andersson told Reuters Health. As with previous research, the new study found that girls were less likely to "grow out of" asthma.

However, the link between childhood allergies to furred animals like cats, dogs and horses and persistent asthma later in life had not been seen in previous studies, Andersson said.

Image: Boy with asthma, via Shutterstock

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