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In the introduction of this brief book, the author states that the purpose of this review is to assess current epidemiologic knowledge of chronic respiratory diseases in children, which are not known to be of infectious origin. This objective has been largely attained. The diseases considered are bronchial asthma, sarcoidosis, cystic fibrosis, hyaline membrane disease, bronchiectasis, and lobar emphysema. Not included are chronic respiratory distress in the premature infant (Wilson-Mikity syndrome) and some other diseases which occur in children but are more often seen in adults, such as desquamative interstitial pneumonia, pulmonary alveolar proteinosis, and idiopathic diffuse interstitial fibrosis of the lung (Hamman-Rich syndrome).
Since asthma is by far the most common of the diseases under discussion, it seems appropriate that much of the book (49 of 137 pages) is devoted to that subject. The discussion of the epidemiology of asthma is extensive and includes mortality, incidence and prevalence, sex,