Indoor molds and lung function in healthy adults

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Abstract

Background Indoor mold exposure is common worldwide and constitutes an important health problem. There are very few studies assessing the relation between mold exposure and lung function levels among non-asthmatic adults. Our objective was to assess the relations between dampness and mold exposures at home and at work and lung function. In particular, we elaborated the importance of different exposure indicators. Methods In a population-based study, 269 non-asthmatic adults from South Finland answered a questionnaire on indoor dampness and mold exposures at home or at work and other factors potentially influencing lung function, and performed spirometry. Multiple linear regression model was applied to study the relations between exposures and spirometric lung function levels. Results In linear regression adjusting for confounding, FEV1 level was reduced on average 200 ml related to mold odor at home (effect estimate -0.20, 95% CI -0.60 to 0.21) and FVC level was reduced on average 460 ml (-0.46, -0.95 to 0.03) respectively. Exposure to mold odor at home or at work or both was related to reduced FEV1 (-0.15, -0.42 to 0.12) and FVC (-0.22, -0.55 to 0.11) levels. Women had on average 510 ml reduced FEV1 levels (-0.51, -1.0 to 0.03) and 820 ml reduced FVC levels (-0.82, -1.4 to -0.20) related to mold odor exposure at home. Conclusions Mold odor exposure was related to lower lung function levels among non-asthmatic adults, especially among women. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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APA

Hernberg, S., Sripaiboonkij, P., Quansah, R., Jaakkola, J. J. K., & Jaakkola, M. S. (2014). Indoor molds and lung function in healthy adults. Respiratory Medicine, 108(5), 677–684. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rmed.2014.03.004

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