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Research Letter
April 2016

Wheezing Patterns in Early Childhood and the Risk of Respiratory and Allergic Disease in Adolescence

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Pediatrics and Child Health, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • 2Department of Community Health Sciences, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • 3Children’s Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • 4Department of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • 5Division of Allergy and Immunology, Department of Pediatrics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • 6Department of Pediatrics, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
  • 7Department of Internal Medicine, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
JAMA Pediatr. 2016;170(4):393-395. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2015.4127

Discerning the clinical relevance of different wheezing patterns in young children is challenging. The landmark Tucson Children’s Respiratory Study1 identified 4 clinically distinct early-life wheezing phenotypes from their 1980 to 1984 population-based birth cohort: never, transient early (wheezing before age 3 years, but not at age 6 years), late onset (wheezing at age 6 years, but not before age 3 years), and persistent (wheezing before age 3 years and at age 6 years). These phenotypes were shown to be associated with respiratory outcomes in adolescence2; however, associations with diagnosed disease were not reported, and it is unclear whether these findings apply to genetically predisposed children. To address these unresolved questions, we applied the Tucson Children’s Respiratory Study wheeze phenotypes to the high-risk Canadian Asthma Primary Prevention Study cohort and evaluated associations with pulmonary function, asthma, and allergic disease in adolescence.

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