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Thursday, May 23, 2013
Moving to Reduce Asthma
My family lives just outside Hartford, CT. My one year old daughter had been recently diagnosed with asthma. In the last 4 weeks she has been hospitalized 2 times, the first time she was intubated for about 24 hours. Are we living in an area of the US that is harmful to her and is there a better place we can live that is better for her?
The prevalence of asthma among children is notably very high in Hartford, CT for several reasons. These may include the following reasons: 1) it is an urban community with significant industry and air pollution; 2) there are large minority populations (hispanics) that are at increased risk for developing asthma due to environmental and genetic interactions; 3) indoor air quality (i.e., dust mites, cockroaches, mold, animal dander) may be triggering asthma in susceptible children. Moving to another city will not necessarily rid your child of asthma. I would assess her allergic status by seeing a qualified board-certified allergist in your area, assessing your indoor air quality at home or daycare, and make sure that she is being treated appropriately for upper and lower respiratory symptoms. So, my immediate recommendation is not to leave your town but to be proactive in your daughter's future care.
I Leonard Bernstein, MD
Clinical Professor Emeritus
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati