Allergy Asthma Respir Dis.  2013 Dec;1(4):321-332. 10.4168/aard.2013.1.4.321.

Epidemiology of allergic rhinitis in Korean children

  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Inha University Hospital, Inha University School of Medicine, Incheon, Korea.
  • 2Environmental Health Center for Allergic Rhinitis, Inha University Hospital, Incheon, Korea.
  • 3Environmental Health Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Ulsan, Korea.
  • 4Environmental Health Center, Jeju National University School of Medicine, Jeju, Korea.


The diagnosis of allergic rhinitis (AR) is based upon the concordance between a history of allergic symptoms and diagnostic tests. This study is to investigate the epidemiology of AR by using data from National Health Insurance Corporation (NHIC) and data according to the AR definition in general students health screening.
We examined medical insurance claims data of NHIC from 2004 to 2010 according to age, area, and gender. We investigated the results of Korean International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood questionnaires and skin prick tests of 14,133 students participated in health screening from 2010 to 2012.
The prevalence of AR according to the NHIC data was elementary school students (24.34%); middle school students (13.75%) and high school students (12.17%). The prevalence of AR was higher in boy than in girl, annually. In health screening, the prevalence of AR was elementary school students (19.50%+/-0.26); middle school students (23.19%+/-0.30) and high school students (24.11%+/-0.31). The prevalence of AR had peaking at the age late teens (P<0.0001) and was higher in boy (26.49%+/-0.38) than in girl (17.43%+/-0.35) (P<0.0001). Sensitization rate of allergen in students with AR was house dust mite (86.71%+/-0.48); pollen (41.26%+/-1.01) and molds (14.80%+/-0.52).
The prevalence according to the AR definition tended to be increased with aging in Korean children. There are some differences in the prevalence of AR in the data of NHIC and health screening study. Further investigation will be needed to reveal the causes of this difference.


Allergic rhinitis; Epidemiology; Child; Prevalence
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