We performed a matched case-control study with asthmatic children (6-14 years of age) from two different clinics in Zaragoza, Spain, between 2010 – 2016. Clinical data were collected from medical records and psychosocial disorders were assessed by interviewing the caregiver using validated questionnaires (Goldberg, CES-D, SF-12, PSS and SPIN). General analysis of cases and controls was performed using McNemar, Chi and Wilcoxon nonparametric tests. A logistic regression model to predict more severe asthma, adjusted by caregiver psychosocial disorders was performed.
208 children were evaluated (104 cases). Mean age was 9.7 ± 2.4 years, with a male predominance (62.5%). Anxiety, social phobia, depression, acute and chronic psychological disorders, and poor quality of life related to mental health were significantly more prevalent in caregivers of asthmatic children (p<0.05). On multivariate analysis, all of the above disorders significantly increased the risk of uncontrolled asthma, where anxiety, acute psychological disorders, and chronic psychological disorders were the most significant (OR 8.54, 95%CI 3.46-21.05, p<0.001; OR 6.05, 95%CI 2.39-15.28, p<0.001; and OR 4.86, 95%CI 1.97-12.02, p=0.001, respectively).
The prevalence of psychosocial disorders in caregivers of asthmatic children is high, when compared to caregivers of healthy children. The presence of anxiety, social phobia, depression, and poor quality of life is associated with an increased risk of worse controlled asthma. Perhaps, early detection and treatment of these disorders could positively impact childhood asthma control.
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