Sex Modifies the Association Between Acetaminophen Use and Asthma Among Young Adults: Results from Two Population-Based Studies
Saturday, March 3, 2018
South Hall A2 (Convention Center)
Ali H. Ziyab, PhD, Hongmei Zhang, PhD, Ramesh Jagath Kurukulaaratchy, BM DM MRCP, Hasan Arshad, MD, Wilfried Karmaus, MD
RATIONALE: Epidemiologic studies have demonstrated associations between acetaminophen use and asthma development. However, whether acetaminophen use associates with asthma in a sex-specific manner remains unanswered. This study sought to determine whether sex modifies the association between acetaminophen use and asthma among young adults.

METHODS: Data from the Isle of Wight birth cohort study (IOW; n = 1,456, aged 18 years) and Kuwait University Allergy cross-sectional study (KUAS; n = 1,154, aged 18-26 years) were analyzed. Acetaminophen use and history of asthma diagnosis and symptoms were self-reported by participants. Sex-stratified associations between acetaminophen use and asthma and statistical interactions were evaluated using Poisson regression with robust variance estimation to infer prevalence ratio. Adjusted prevalence ratios (aPR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were estimated.

RESULTS: Current acetaminophen use (at least once in the past month vs. never in the past 12-months) was associated with increased asthma risk in the IOW study (aPR, 1.65, 95% CI: 1.22-2.24) and KUAS (aPR, 1.61, 95% CI: 1.02-2.79). In sex-stratified analysis of the IOW study, acetaminophen use was associated with asthma among males (aPR, 2.35, 95% CI: 1.59-3.47), but not among females (aPR, 1.29, 95% CI: 0.90-1.85; interaction-term p-value = 0.027). Similar results were found in KUAS, with risk seen in males (aPR, 2.58, 95% CI: 1.03-8.38), but not in females (aPR, 1.27, 95% CI: 0.70-2.33; interaction-term p-value = 0.035).

CONCLUSIONS: Acetaminophen appears to be associated with asthma risk in a sex-specific manner with young adult males but not females showing higher risk of this association.