Asthma prevalence is increasing worldwide, and there is growing concern about the burden of asthma both for patients and for the health sevices. There have also been major changes in the way in which the management of asthma death in some western countries in the 1960's and again in the 1970's. Asthma epidemiology has a major role to play in investigating the causes of these global changes, and in developing preventive interventions. This is the first text on the principles and methods of asthma epidemiology. It describes the types of asthma epidemiology studies, and discusses the strengths and limitations of the various methods of measuring asthma prevalence and asthma morbidity and the major risk factors for asthma, methods of studying the causes of asthma deaths. The book will therefore be of interest not only to epidemiologists, but also to the very large number of respiratory physicians, allergist, and pediatricians who are becoming involved in asthma epidemiology.