Sensitisation to aeroallergens in relation to asthma and other allergic diseases in Angolan children: a cross-sectional study

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Margarete Arrais
Ofélia Lulua
Francisca Quifica
José Rosado-Pinto
Jorge M.R. Gama
Miguel Brito
Luis Taborda-Barata


Angola, Allergens, Asthma, Atopy, Sensitisation, Skin prick tests.


Introduction and Objectives: In Africa, few studies of sensitisation profiles have been performed in children or adolescents and, in Angola, there are none. The objectives of the present study were to assess the sensitisation profile of Angolan schoolchildren and to determine the relationship between that pattern, sociodemographic factors, asthma and other allergic diseases.

Materials and Methods: Cross-sectional, observational study in 5-14-year-old children, performed between September and November 2017, in the Province of Bengo, Angola. Five schools (15%) were randomly selected in the geographical area of the study: three from an urban area, and two from a rural area. Data were collected using the Portuguese versions of the ISAAC questionnaires for children and adolescents, regarding asthma, rhinitis and eczema. Skin prick tests (SPT) were performed with a battery of 12 aeroallergens. Stools were assessed for the presence of helminths. Descriptive statistics were used, as well as univariate calculation of odds ratios.

Results: Sensitisation to aeroallergens was low (8%) and most sensitised children were asymptomatic. Most frequent sensitisations involved house dust mites, cockroach or fungi, and a high proportion of children (78.1%) were monosensitised. No relationship was detected between sensitisations and asthma, rhinitis or eczema. Place of residence, gender, age or helminthic infection did not affect the probability of having positive SPTs.

Conclusions: The most frequent sensitisations in children from Bengo Province in Angola involve house dust mites, followed by cockroach and fungi. No relationship was found between atopic sensitisation and asthma or other allergic diseases.

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