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Article |

A Study of the Natural History of Bronchial Asthma in Children

Douglas E. Johnstone, MD
Am J Dis Child. 1968;115(2):213-216. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1968.02100010215010.
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THE POSSIBILITY of "outgrowing" bronchial asthma at the time of adolescence has been the subject of much speculation and clinical study.1-5 This concern takes on special importance if one recalls that asthma and related respiratory allergic syndromes make up more than a quarter of all chronic diseases among American children.6

This prospective study was designed in 1953 to determine the frequency of spontaneous remission of bronchial asthma in patients in the pediatric allergic clinic of the Strong Memorial Hospital.

Methods  As part of a controlled study of the effectiveness of hyposensitization therapy in perennial bronchial asthma in children, the half of the patients who received only placebo injections provided a group upon whom the natural history of the disease could be evaluated. There were 104 such children. Although not representing a random sample of all children in the community with asthma, this study does have the virtue of


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