|There has been a
dramatic increase in the prevalence of asthma in the last 20 years, affecting
672,000, or over 11% of Canadian children in 1994/95. Asthma is the most
common chronic condition of childhood; a major public health issue.
|We do not know
what is driving the increased prevalence of childhood asthma, but areas of
research must include familial, allergenic and environmental factors. We do
know that exposure to both outdoor and indoor pollutants, and Environmental
Tobacco Smoke, makes asthma worse in asthmatics. The role of pollution in the
causation of asthma must be studied more since exposure to air pollution is
widespread. In Canada, the south
Atlantic region, Ontario and Lower Fraser Valley in B.C. are three regions
where air pollution is greatest.