Source: Xinhua

03-06-2009 13:33

Special Report:   Tech Max

BEIJING, March 3 (Xinhuanet) -- Children who watched television for more than two hours daily were twice as likely to have been diagnosed with asthma as those who watched less, says UK researchers Tuesday.

Asthma affects more than 300 million people worldwide and is the most common children's chronic illness. Symptoms include wheezing, shortness of breath, coughing and chest tightness.

Andrea Sherriff of the University of Glasgow and colleagues said: "There has been a recent suggestion that breathing patterns associated with sedentary behavior could lead to developmental changes in the lungs and wheezing illnesses in children."

Sherriff and colleagues studied more than 3,000 children from birth until nearly the age of 12.

The parents were questioned annually on wheezing symptoms among their children and whether a doctor had diagnosed asthma as they grew up. The researchers also analyzed how much television the children watched.

The study found that 6 percent of children at around age 12 who had no symptoms of the disease growing up had asthma.

"The findings add to a wealth of evidence linking a lack of exercise and being overweight with an increased risk of asthma," Elaine Vickers of Asthma UK, who was not involved in the study, said in a statement.

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Editor:Yang Jie