Due to increase in allergic morbidity, better understanding of the relationships between environmental parameters and clinical responses of patients is needed. Serious analysis of such correlations requires examination of an entire population. So far there has been no study in Israel that examined an entire population in order to establish the distribution of inhalant allergens, the prevalence of skin hypersensitivity and allergic clinical morbidity. To examine these parameters we studied the population of Kibbutz Netzer Sereni, a rural community exposed to large amounts of various pollen allergens. Of the 505 members aged 4-70 years, 395 (78.2%) responded. Air sampling, once a month throughout the year, identified the most prevalent inhaled allergens and measured amounts. Allergic profiles were evaluated using prick tests with allergenic extracts, clinical questionnaires and medical records. The most prevalent allergenic pollens in the air were pecan, olive, cypress and palm trees, grasses and weeds such as English plantain, sagebrush, pigweed and lamb's quarters. Over 45% of 395 participants were atopic to 1 or more of the 27 allergenic extracts. The most prevalent causes of atopy were the house dust mite (28.9%), sagebrush (16.5%), grasses (18.2%), pecan (13.2%) and cypress (11.1%). Over 50% of atopic residents were symptomatic, while 22.9% of those non-atopic reported symptoms that could be attributed to allergy. This investigation provides solid data for the prevalence of atopy and allergy in the region of this kibbutz.
|Pages (from-to)||505-511, 584|
|State||Published - 15 Apr 1996|