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Table 3 Distribution of health indicators, living conditions and parental educational level of 6-year-old children in West Germany stratified by urban/rural residency and year of investigation.

From: Preschool children's health and its association with parental education and individual living conditions in East and West Germany

  Mean ± standard deviation/Prevalence [%]
  Total Residency a,b   Year of investigationc,d  
   Urban e Rural f   1991 1994 1997 2000  
Health indicators          
Airway resistance [10-1•kPa•s/l] 6.30 ± 15.0 6.39 ± 1.49 6.15 ± 1.50 * 5.83 ± 1.53 6.23 ± 1.58 6.96 ± 1.51 6.35 ± 1.27 *
Total lung capacity [% predicted] 105 ± 11 105 ± 10 104 ± 11 - 103 ± 11 105 ± 9 105 ± 9 107 ± 11 *
Birth weight [10•g] 337 ± 59 333 ± 58 348 ± 61 * 334 ± 60 338 ± 56 343 ± 54 337 ± 58 *
Body height [cm] 120.4 ± 5.6 120.0 ± 5.6 121.5 ± 5.4 * 120.6 ± 5.6 120.9 ± 5.4 120.7 ± 5.2 119.6 ± 5.7 *
Overweight, BMI > 19 kg/m2 7.5 8.3 4.7 * 5.7 5.1 6.5 11.8 *
Bronchitis, ever diagnosed 45.5 45.0 47.2 - 44.9 52.3 51.2 41.5 -
More than 4 colds in last 12 months 14.7 15.5 11.9 * 15.7 13.2 15.1 13.4 *
Frequent cough 7.8 8.4 5.7 * 8.9 6.8 8.5 6.1 *
Sneeze attacks in the last 12 months 5.8 6.4 3.6 * 4.9 --g 6.2 7.1 *
Allergy, ever diagnosed 14.0 14.1 14.0 - 15.8 13.5 12.4 12.1 *
Eczema, ever diagnosed 13.4 13.6 12.6 - 10.7 16.3 15.7 15.5 *
Atopic eczema, day of investigation 7.9 7.0 9.2 - 10.9 9.0 5.5 4.6 *
Specific IgE grass pollen positive 10.8 11.2 10.2 - 9.8 12.2 10.6 10.6 -
Specific IgE house dust mite positive 13.0 13.0 13.1 - 11.7 14.3 10.8 16.2 -
Living conditions          
Single child 27.2 31.1 13.3 * 28.8 22.1 19.6 29.6 -
Small living space 29.0 33.8 12.1 * 33.8 22.5 20.6 27.4 *
Unfavourable indoor air 16.2 16.3 16.0 - 19.2 23.0 15.8 9.4 *
Damp housing condition 5.3 6.2 2.3 * 5.9 3.9 4.6 5.2 -
Maternal smoking during pregnancy 28.7 33.6 11.4 * 34.8 25.2 19.4 24.3 *
Living near a busy road 50.9 54.6 38.1 * 48.5 57.5 50.6 52.4 *
Parental education          
Low parental educational level 65.2 66.5 60.6 * 63.4 47.5 67.3 73.5 *
  1. a t-test (continuous variables); b chi-square test (dichotomous variables); c t-test for correlation (continuous variables); d trend test (dichotomous variables); e Duisburg, Essen, and Cologne; f Borken; g not investigated; * p < 0.05