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Worst 100 U.S. Cities For Asthma

Scranton, Pa. is the worst city in the U.S. for asthma, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.

The foundation has released its "2006 Asthma Capitals" list. The annual list names the 100 U.S. cities the foundation considers to be the nation's most challenging places to live for people with asthma.

Leading this year's list are:

  1. Scranton, Pa.
  2. Richmond, Va.
  3. Philadelphia
  4. Atlanta
  5. Milwaukee

Before you read the full list, check out the standards used in formulating the list.

"Researchers developing this year's rankings looked at 12 factors from three broad categories -- prevalence, risk, and medical factors," states a foundation news release.

"All factors are weighted differently but the most important ones are the risk factors, which included annual pollution and ozone levels, pollen counts, public smoking bans, and more."

Many cities on the list showed an above-average use of "rescue medications," indicating that asthma patients weren't properly managing their asthma, the news release notes.

Full Rankings

Here is the full list, starting with the worst cities for asthma:

  1. Scranton, Pa.
  2. Richmond, Va.
  3. Philadelphia
  4. Atlanta
  5. Milwaukee
  6. Cleveland
  7. Greensboro, N.C.
  8. Youngstown, Ohio
  9. St. Louis
  10. Detroit
  11. Knoxville, Tenn.
  12. Cincinnati
  13. Toledo, Ohio
  14. Canton, Ohio
  15. Baton Rouge, La.
  16. Pittsburgh
  17. Little Rock, Ark.
  18. Phoenix-Mesa, Ariz.
  19. Memphis, Tenn.
  20. Baltimore
  21. Lancaster, Pa.
  22. Chicago
  23. Charlotte, N.C.
  24. Houston
  25. Harrisburg, Pa.
  26. McAllen, Texas
  27. Washington
  28. Hartford, Conn.
  29. Birmingham, Ala.
  30. Kalamazoo, Mich.
  31. Grand Rapids, Mich.
  32. Indianapolis
  33. Fresno, Calif.
  34. Dayton, Ohio
  35. Louisville, Ky.
  36. Allentown, Pa.
  37. Salt Lake City
  38. San Diego
  39. San Antonio
  40. Bakersfield, Calif.
  41. Columbia, S.C.
  42. Las Vegas
  43. Chattanooga, Tenn.
  44. Lansing, Mich.
  45. Stockton, Calif.
  46. Mobile, Ala.
  47. Omaha, Neb.
  48. Augusta, Ga.
  49. Los Angeles
  50. Dallas-Fort Worth
  51. Johnson City, Tenn.
  52. Fort Wayne, Ind.
  53. Raleigh-Durham, N.C.
  54. Seattle
  55. Denver
  56. Kansas City, Mo.
  57. Oklahoma City
  58. New York
  59. Norfolk, Va.
  60. Springfield, Mass.
  61. Modesto, Calif.
  62. New Orleans
  63. Spokane, Wash.
  64. Tulsa, Okla.
  65. Columbus, Ohio
  66. Buffalo, N.Y.
  67. Nashville, Tenn.
  68. Greenville, S.C.
  69. Sacramento, Calif.
  70. Boston
  71. Boise City, Idaho
  72. Charleston, S.C.
  73. Portland, Ore.
  74. Colorado Springs, Colo.
  75. Rochester, N.Y.
  76. El Paso, Texas
  77. Des Moines, Iowa
  78. Lexington, Ky.
  79. Albuquerque, N.M.
  80. Sarasota, Fla.
  81. Wichita, Kan.
  82. Syracuse, N.Y.
  83. Providence, R.I.
  84. Austin, Texas
  85. Fort Myers, Fla.
  86. Tucson, Ariz.
  87. Jackson, Miss.
  88. Madison, Wis.
  89. Miami
  90. Pensacola, Fla.
  91. San Francisco
  92. Orlando, Fla.
  93. Lakeland, Fla.
  94. Melbourne, Fla.
  95. Daytona Beach, Fla.
  96. Jacksonville, Fla.
  97. West Palm Beach, Fla.
  98. Albany, N.Y.
  99. Minneapolis
  100. Tampa, Fla.

Sources: Asthma and Allergy Foundation, "2006 Asthma Capitals -- The Most Challenging Places to Live with Asthma." News release, Asthma, and Allergy Foundation of America.

By Miranda Hitti
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD
© 2006, WebMD Inc. All rights reserved

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