Reported Drug Allergy among Children Attending Day Care Centers

Pedro Martins, Joana Belo, João Marques, Ana Luísa Papoila, Iolanda Caires, José Araújo-Martins, Catarina Pedro, José Rosado-Pinto, Daniel Virella, Paula Leiria-Pinto, Nuno Neuparth


Introduction: Data about drug allergy prevalence in the general population, particularly in children, are lacking. This study aimed to estimate the prevalence of parent-reported drug allergy, in children attending day care centers in Lisbon and Oporto.
Material and Methods: In Phase II of the “ENVIRH study – Environment and Health in Children Day Care Centers”, a health questionnaire which included questions about drug allergies was administered to children by stratified, random sampling of day care centers.
Results: The final analysis included 1,169 questionnaires, 52.5% from boys. The mean age was 3.5 ± 1.5 years. The prevalence of reported drug allergy was 4.1% (95% CI: 3.0 - 5.2%). The most frequently reported drugs were antibiotics (27 cases) and NSAIDs (in 6 cases). In the multivariate analysis, reported drug allergy was directly associated with age (OR 1.19; 95% CI 1.01 - 1.41) and reported food allergy (OR 3.19; 95% CI 1.41 - 7.19). It was inversely associated with the level of parental education (OR 0.25; 95% CI 0.10 - 0.59).
Discussion: Even though the limitations of the study our results are in accordance with those reported by previous authors and suggest that there is a high prevalence of reported drug allergy in the considered age group.
Conclusion: A correct assessment of these situations is needed in order to avoid unnecessary drug evictions.
Keywords: Child Day Care Centers; Child; Drug Hypersensitivity; Prevalence; Portugal.

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