The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2009 OPEN FORUM Abstracts

ROLE OF ALCOHOL ABUSE IN ASTHMA EXACERABATION- AN ANALYSIS OF NHANES 2005 2006 SURVEY

Joseph Arthur, Venkata Subhash Gorrepati, Pramil Cheriyath, Daniel Fischman; Harrisburg Hospital: Pinnacle Health, Harrisburg, PA

Background: Many factors trigger the flare up of Asthma leading to the increased number of emergency department visits and posing a risk to their lives. Alcohol is reported to cause airway inflammation through the release of its metabolite acetaldehyde. Alcohol-induced asthma has been well studied among the Asian population. However data on occurrence of this phenomenon among Caucasians and other races are quite sparse. Our objective is to determine the relation between consumption of alcohol and exacerbation of Asthma. Methods: The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is a cross sectional study of non institutionalized population of the United States in form of surveys, examinations and laboratory tests. Heavy alcohol consumption was defined as more than 4 drinks in a day for men up to 65 years, or more than 3 drinks in a day for women and men more than 65 years. Asthma exacerbation is defined as the visit to the emergency care or urgent care received because of asthma within the past year. The NHANES data was used and the relation was assessed using statistical software SAS version 9.1 PROC SURVEY methods. Results: 10348 participants took part in the survey and after deleting those with age less than 20 and no history of asthma we had 650 participants. After the age adjustment the relation between the asthma exacerbation and heavy alcohol consumption was found to be insignificant(odds ratio (OR) 0.66, with 95% CI 0.25-1.69). Even after the adjustment for gender, race, marital status and smoking the relation was not found to be insignificant (OR 0.7, with 95% CI 0.29- 1.67) Conclusion: Our results showed that there is no relation between alcohol consumption and asthma exacerbation in the Caucasian, African American and Hispanic Population. This can be explained on the fact that these groups lack a genetic defect in the gene for aldehyde dehydrogenase which is specific for Asian population. The lack of this defect could effectively clear the alcohol preventing the accumulation of acetaldehyde thus preventing the airway inflammation. Sponsored Research - None

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