Indoor mould exposure, asthma and rhinitis: findings from systematic reviews and recent longitudinal studies

Denis Caillaud, Benedicte Leynaert, Marion Keirsbulck, Rachel Nadif
  • European Respiratory Review, May 2018, European Respiratory Society (ERS)
  • DOI: 10.1183/16000617.0137-2017

What is it about?

Starting from the conclusions of the Institute Of Medicine (2004) and WHO reports (2009), the aim of the present review is to provide an updated overview of the last ten years published literature on the effect of indoor mould exposure on asthma and rhinitis in children and adults, including data from indoor mould exposure in the work-place, and separating findings from qualitative and quantitative studies. We focused especially on longitudinal studies, a design that permits the ascertainment of temporality by assessing exposure before the onset of the disease, and is less subject to biases encountered in cross-sectional studies Regarding asthma risk, the distinction between epidemiological data in children and adults allowed us to conclude that strong arguments suggest causality in the development and exacerbation of asthma in children given the consistency of data found in longitudinal studies with a specific focus on exposures to moulds - and not dampness. In adults, the level of evidence was considered sufficient for an association for asthma in relation to work in a mouldy and damp building, whereas in the general population, there is insufficient data leading to the conclusion at a limited level of evidence. For allergic rhinitis, the consistency of data enables a sufficient level of evidence for an association, but it was not possible to conclude to a causal association.

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The following have contributed to this page: Professor Denis M Caillaud

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