[Prevalence of asthma among children in France].
ABSTRACT To estimate the prevalence of asthma among children in France.
Data from 3 French national studies were analyzed: the Decennial Health Interview Survey conducted in 2003 among a representative sample of households and 2 surveys conducted among representative samples of schoolchildren from 9(th) grade in 2003-2004 and 5(th) grade in 2004-2005. In the Decennial Health Interview Survey, data on respiratory health were collected using a self-administered questionnaire that was filled in by 1675 children aged 11-14 years living in selected households. For the studies among schoolchildren, 7104 children from 5(th) grade and 7284 from 9(th) grade were interviewed by the school nurse or physician using a standardized questionnaire.
The cumulative prevalence of asthma varied from 12.3 to 13.4% depending on the survey and the prevalence of current wheeze (wheezing in the past year) varied from 8.3 to 10.1%. The prevalence of current asthma (current wheeze in a child having already had an asthma attack or treatment for wheezing or asthma in the past year) was nearly 9% in 5(th)-grade and 9(th)-grade schoolchildren. Asthma was not controlled (at least 4 attacks, 1 awakening per week, 1 severe attack, 4 unplanned medical visits, or 1 hospitalization in the past year) in 38.5% of the 598 asthmatic teenagers from 9(th) grade, and 29.2% did not declare any anti-inflammatory drug treatment in the past week in spite of the absence of asthma control.
The prevalence of current asthma among children in France is estimated at 9%. Asthma control and treatment remain insufficient. Improving therapeutic and educational management of asthma among children and teenagers is necessary.