New research from Italy suggests that asthma may share a fundamental link with gastrointestinal symptoms (Arch Dis Child, 2000; 82: 131-5).

The researchers studied 75 children, aged 3-14 years, with bronchial asthma and compared these children with an age and sex matched control group.

Results suggested that children with asthma were 2.7 times more likely to have GI symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhoea and abdominal pain, and 4.4 times more likely to be

experiencing symptoms at the time of the study. Among the various symptoms, abdominal pain was the most common.

The authors suggest that an abnormality of the GI tract might be present concurrently with asthma.

New evidence shows that more than two thirds of autistic children have an abnormal GI tract. This adds weight to the hypothesis that autism is a metabolic disorder and that the MMR vaccine may cause autism by damaging the GI tract (J Pediatr, 1999; 135: 559-63).

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