Asthma- getting worse or better recognition
I came across an interesting article in my reading (Carter et al, Annals of Allergy, June edition, not free online). Using a questionnaire the authors divided Seattle middle school students (about 2300 each time) into 3 groups: those with asthma symptoms in the last year who’d by diagnosed with asthma, those with asthma symptoms in the last year who did not carry the diagnosis of asthma, and those without symptoms (presumably there were few patients who had no symptoms but had been diagnosed with asthma).
The results? In 1995 about 3% of the population of kids were diagnosed with asthma and another 12% had undiagnosed asthma (symptoms w/o diagnosis). In contrast, in 2003, just over 6% of kids had asthma and an equal number had undiagnosed asthma.
So, at least based on this study, the total number of kids with asthma is steady to slightly decreased over the 8 years, but a much higher proportion of kids is being correctly diagnosed, albeit only about 50%, even now.