Rhinitis risk factors

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1] Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Fatimo Biobaku M.B.B.S [2]


Several studies have identified risk factors associated with some forms of rhinitis such as allergic rhinitis. However, the nonallergic (non-infectious) rhinitis still requires more research to better understand the disease and its associated risk factors.[1]

Risk Factors

The risk factors for allergic rhinitis include the following:[2][3]

  • The presence of other allergic diseases such as asthma, eczema
  • Parental rhinitis
  • Allergic sensitization to common household aeroallergens
  • Obesity/being overweight
  • Elevated exhaled Nitric oxide
  • High total serum IgE
  • Exposure to parental smoking
  • Exposure to pets
  • Genetic predisposition[4]
  • Exposure to fossil fuel and traffic related pollutants[4]
  • Increased dampness and poor ventilation from tightly insulated modern homes (increases sensitization and allergy to molds)[4]
  • Early introduction of infants to formula/food[5]

Risk factors for infectious rhinitis include:[6]

  • Young age
  • Daycare attendance
  • Exposure to tobacco smoke/air pollutants
  • Deficient immunity
  • Crowding conditions

Increased risk of occupational rhinitis has been found in the following professions:[7][8]

  • Furriers
  • Bakers
  • Livestock breeders
  • Food-processing workers
  • Veterinarians
  • Farmers
  • Electronic product assemblers
  • Boat builders


  1. Bousquet J, Fokkens W, Burney P, Durham SR, Bachert C, Akdis CA; et al. (2008). "Important research questions in allergy and related diseases: nonallergic rhinitis: a GA2LEN paper". Allergy. 63 (7): 842–53. doi:10.1111/j.1398-9995.2008.01715.x. PMID 18588549.
  2. Baumann LM, Romero KM, Robinson CL, Hansel NN, Gilman RH, Hamilton RG; et al. (2015). "Prevalence and risk factors for allergic rhinitis in two resource-limited settings in Peru with disparate degrees of urbanization". Clin Exp Allergy. 45 (1): 192–9. doi:10.1111/cea.12379. PMID 25059756.
  3. Song N, Shamssain M, Mohammed S, Zhang J, Wu J, Fu C; et al. (2014). "Prevalence, severity and risk factors of asthma, rhinitis and eczema in a large group of Chinese schoolchildren". J Asthma. 51 (3): 232–42. doi:10.3109/02770903.2013.867973. PMID 24303994.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Katelaris CH, Lee BW, Potter PC, Maspero JF, Cingi C, Lopatin A; et al. (2012). "Prevalence and diversity of allergic rhinitis in regions of the world beyond Europe and North America". Clin Exp Allergy. 42 (2): 186–207. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2222.2011.03891.x. PMID 22092947.
  5. Skoner DP (2001). "Allergic rhinitis: definition, epidemiology, pathophysiology, detection, and diagnosis". J Allergy Clin Immunol. 108 (1 Suppl): S2–8. PMID 11449200.
  6. Passioti M, Maggina P, Megremis S, Papadopoulos NG (2014). "The common cold: potential for future prevention or cure". Curr Allergy Asthma Rep. 14 (2): 413. doi:10.1007/s11882-013-0413-5. PMID 24415465.
  7. Stevens WW, Grammer LC (2015). "Occupational rhinitis: an update". Curr Allergy Asthma Rep. 15 (1): 487. doi:10.1007/s11882-014-0487-8. PMID 25430949.
  8. Hytönen M, Kanerva L, Malmberg H, Martikainen R, Mutanen P, Toikkanen J (1997). "The risk of occupational rhinitis". Int Arch Occup Environ Health. 69 (6): 487–90. PMID 9215937.

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