Background: Allergic rhinitis (AR) is associated with significant clinical and socioeconomic burdens. It is a frequent risk factor for other atopic diseases, such as asthma. Thus, a comprehensive updated description of the epidemiology of AR in the pediatric population is needed to understand its implications better. Objective: To determine the incidence, prevalence, and epidemiology of AR among children over the past 10 years. Methods: We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis using a protocol registered and published with the International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews (Register No. CRD42022332667). We searched databases, registers, and Web sites for cohort or cross-sectional studies published between 2012 and 2022, evaluating the epidemiology (incidence or prevalence) of AR in the pediatric population. We assessed study quality of and risk for bias using items derived from the Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology statement. Results: Twenty-two studies were included in the analysis. The overall prevalence of physician-diagnosed AR was 10.48%, the overall prevalence of self-reported current (past 12 months) AR was 18.12%, and the overall prevalence of self-reported lifetime AR was 19.93%. The incidence could not be determined. The analysis of prevalence of AR over time showed a rising trend in physician-diagnosed AR over the years (8.39% in 2012 to 2015 vs 19.87% in 2016 to 2022). Conclusions: Allergic rhinitis has significant impacts on the pediatric population, with an increasing trend for diagnosed AR over the years. Further investigations concerning the incidence, comorbidities, diagnosis, and treatment are needed to provide a complete overview of the disease as well as its burden and management.
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