Spring season birth is associated with higher emergency department admission for acute allergic reactions

Published:November 12, 2015DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejim.2015.11.004

      Abstract

      Background

      Acute allergic reactions are important causes of emergency department (ED) admission, imposing a significant clinical and organizational burden. Since the season of birth is linked with early exposure to allergens, this study was aimed to establish whether an association exists between season of birth and incidence and severity of acute allergic reactions in the ED.

      Methods

      The electronic hospital database was searched to identify all consecutive adult patients who were admitted to the ED for acute allergic reactions (acute urticaria, acute angioedema, urticaria–angioedema and anaphylaxis) during a 1-year period.

      Results

      The final study population consisted in 588 patients (328 women and 260 men; mean age 43 ± 18 years, range 16–96 years). Increased frequency of ED admission was observed for patients born in spring, whereas the lowest frequency was found for those born in autumn. Patients born in spring exhibited 1.19 and 1.12 higher risk of ED admission for acute allergic reactions compared to those born in autumn and in all other seasons, respectively. This difference remained significant in patients with allergic reaction attributable to drugs and in those with unknown triggers, whereas no pattern of seasonality was observed in patients with allergic reactions attributable to aliments, hymenoptera, chemicals or inhalants. Patients born in spring also exhibited 1.86 and 1.52 higher risk of being admitted to the ED for severe acute allergic reactions compared to those born in autumn and in all other seasons, respectively.

      Conclusions

      Patients born in spring appear particularly vulnerable to allergic reactions requiring ED visit.

      Keywords

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