Seasonal asthma in Melbourne, Australia, and some observations on the occurrence of thunderstorm asthma and its predictability

AuthorsSilver, J.D.
Sutherland, M.F.
Johnston, F.H.
Lampugnani, E.R.
McCarthy, M.A.
Jacobs, S.J.
Pezza, A.B.
Newbigin, E.
TypeJournal Article (Original Research)
JournalPLoSOne
PubMed ID29649224
Year of Publication2018
URLhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29649224
DOI/10.1371/journal.pone.0194929
Download journalpone_0194929_.pdf (2.0 MB)
AbstractWe examine the seasonality of asthma-related hospital admissions in Melbourne, Australia, in particular the contribution and predictability of episodic thunderstorm asthma. Using a time-series ecological approach based on asthma admissions to Melbourne metropolitan hospitals, we identified seasonal peaks in asthma admissions that were centred in late February, June and mid-November. These peaks were most likely due to the return to school, winter viral infections and seasonal allergies, respectively. We performed non-linear statistical regression to predict daily admission rates as functions of the seasonal cycle, weather conditions, reported thunderstorms, pollen counts and air quality. Important predictor variables were the seasonal cycle and mean relative humidity in the preceding two weeks, with higher humidity associated with higher asthma admissions. Although various attempts were made to model asthma admissions, none of the models explained substantially more variation above that associated with the annual cycle. We also identified a list of high asthma admissions days (HAADs). Most HAADs fell in the late-February return-to-school peak and the November allergy peak, with the latter containing the greatest number of daily admissions. Many HAADs in the spring allergy peak may represent episodes of thunderstorm asthma, as they were associated with rainfall, thunderstorms, high ambient grass pollen levels and high humidity, a finding that suggests thunderstorm asthma is a recurrent phenomenon in Melbourne that occurs roughly once per five years. The rarity of thunderstorm asthma events makes prediction challenging, underscoring the importance of maintaining high standards of asthma management, both for patients and health professionals, especially during late spring and early summer.

http://www.ibas.org.au/what-we-do/publications/3872990


< More publications



Notch monitoring in sleepNOTCH MONITORING IN SLEEP

Sleep apnea is a condition where breathing is abnormal during sleep. There are two main forms of sleep apnea: obstructive and central. For obstructive sleep apnea, breathing is reduced because the airway...

SHiQ - COSAQSHIQ - COSAQ

Each year in Australia 260 people sustain a SCI, with over half losing full function in their arms and legs (quadriplegia). In addition to the primary disability, there is a very high rate of Obstructive...

IBAS Director Anna Burke unveiling of her portrait at Canberra's Parliament HouseIBAS DIRECTOR ANNA BURKE UNVEILING OF HER PORTRAIT AT CANBERRA'S PARLIAMENT HOUSE

Anna Burke had barely got into the swing of her speech at the unveiling of her portrait at Canberra's Parliament House when the ringing of bells caused half her audience to hurry away

Thunderstorm asthma expected to return in 2017THUNDERSTORM ASTHMA EXPECTED TO RETURN IN 2017

The Morning Show - Thunderstorm asthma expected to return in 2017. The Daily Edition - Thunderstorm Asthma is an unexpected killer. Better Health Channel - Thunderstorm asthma explained. Professor Christine McDonald

National study offers hope for breathlessnessNATIONAL STUDY OFFERS HOPE FOR BREATHLESSNESS

A national medication study is aiming to help thousands of Australians who struggle every day with shortness of breath

Helping Victorians breathe and sleep easy - A New Centre of Excellence in Respiratory and Sleep MedicineHELPING VICTORIANS BREATHE AND SLEEP EASY - A NEW CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE IN RESPIRATORY AND SLEEP MEDICINE

With your support we will build a life-changing Centre of Excellence in Respiratory and Sleep Medicine, improving quality of life and health outcomes for Victorians who struggle to breathe and sleep

Institute for Breathing and Sleep

Level 5, Harold Stokes Building, Austin Hospital
145 Studley Road
Heidelberg, Victoria, 3084

(03) 9496 5390

Email Us

Donate