C-Section May Raise Child's Risk of Allergies, Asthma: Study
MONDAY, Feb. 25 (HealthDay News) -- Babies born by cesarean section are more likely than others to develop allergies, a new study says.
Researchers evaluated more than 1,200 newborns when they were 1 month, 6 months, 1 year and 2 years old.
By age 2, babies born by cesarean section were five times more likely to have allergies than those born naturally when exposed to high levels of common household allergens such as pet dander and dust mites.
The findings "further advance the hygiene hypothesis that early childhood exposure to microorganisms affects the immune system's development and onset of allergies," study lead author Christine Cole Johnson, chairwoman of the health sciences department at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, said in a hospital news release. "We believe a baby's exposure to bacteria in the birth canal is a major influencer on their immune system."
Babies born by C-section have a pattern of "at-risk" microorganisms in their gastrointestinal tract that may make them more susceptible to developing the antibody immunoglobulin E (IgE) when exposed to allergens, Johnson said.
IgE is linked to the development of allergies and asthma.
The study was scheduled for presentation Sunday at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology in San Antonio, Texas.
The study found an association between cesarean birth and allergy risk, but it did not prove cause-and-effect.
Data and conclusions presented at medical meetings are considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has more about allergies and asthma in children.
-- Robert Preidt
Health News TodayFeed
- Spaceflight Might Weaken Astronauts' Immune Systems08/29/2014
- Take Steps to Control Bunions08/29/2014
- Monkey Trial Supports Ebola Drug That May Have Helped 2 Stricken Americans08/29/2014
- Faced With Prostate Cancer, It Helps to Know the Enemy08/29/2014
- Biggest Ever Weekly Rise in Ebola Cases, U.N. Agency Says08/29/2014
Take a Personalized Health Test
What's Causing Your Symptoms?
15 Ways To Get Better Medicine
People who are actively involved in their medical care stay healthier, recover quicker when they're ill, and live longer, healthier lives.