Associations between high ambient temperatures and asthma exacerbation among children in Philadelphia, PA: a time series analysis.

Year of Publication


Date Published

2022 Mar 04

ISSN Number



<p><strong>OBJECTIVES: </strong>High ambient temperatures may contribute to acute asthma exacerbation, a leading cause of morbidity in children. We quantified associations between hot-season ambient temperatures and asthma exacerbation in children ages 0-18 years in Philadelphia, PA.</p>

<p><strong>METHODS: </strong>We created a time series of daily counts of clinical encounters for asthma exacerbation at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia linked with daily meteorological data, June-August of 2011-2016. We estimated associations between mean daily temperature (up to a 5-day lag) and asthma exacerbation using generalised quasi-Poisson distributed models, adjusted for seasonal and long-term trends, day of the week, mean relative humidity,and US holiday. In secondary analyses, we ran models with adjustment for aeroallergens, air pollutants and respiratory virus counts. We quantified overall associations, and estimates stratified by encounter location (outpatient, emergency department, inpatient), sociodemographics and comorbidities.</p>

<p><strong>RESULTS: </strong>The analysis included 7637 asthma exacerbation events. High mean daily temperatures that occurred 5 days before the index date were associated with higher rates of exacerbation (rate ratio (RR) comparing 33°C-13.1°C days: 1.37, 95% CI 1.04 to 1.82). Associations were most substantial for children ages 2 to &lt;5 years and for Hispanic and non-Hispanic black children. Adjustment for air pollutants, aeroallergens and respiratory virus counts did not substantially change RR estimates.</p>

<p><strong>CONCLUSIONS: </strong>This research contributes to evidence that ambient heat is associated with higher rates of asthma exacerbation in children. Further work is needed to explore the mechanisms underlying these associations.</p>



Alternate Title

Occup Environ Med




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