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A survey of a large, nationally representative sample of U.S. high school students shows that there are statistically significant associations between violent victimization and asthma episodes.
Of a total of 1,943 asthmatic students attending public or private schools, those who had been victimized in the past year were 45 percent more likely than those who had not been victimized to report an asthma episode in this period, investigators from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, found.
The researchers defined victimization "as having been threatened or injured with a weapon, such as a gun, knife, or club on school property; having had something, e.g., a car, clothing or books, stolen or deliberately damaged on school property;" or having an injury that required treatment by a doctor or nurse at least once in the past year.
The adolescents who reported missing school because they felt unsafe were nearly three times more likely than those who had not felt unsafe to have had an asthma episode in the past year. The researchers also found that the association between feeling too unsafe to go to school and asthma episodes pertain to adolescents who live in urban, suburban and rural areas.
The observed associations held up after considering the effects of other factors, such as the gender, race/ethnicity, grade level, smoking status, weight and exercise. Violent victimization and feeling unsafe are two potential psychosocial stressors and environmental factors that appear to exacerbate asthma

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"having been threatened or injured with a weapon, such as a gun, knife, or club on school property; having had something, e.g., a car, clothing or books, stolen or deliberately damaged on school property"
These things sound like the type of things that happen more frequently in more urban areas, where pollution is worse.  The raw statistic doesn't compensate for that.
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