Spectrum of noninfectious health effects from molds

Lynnette J. Mazur, Janice Kim, Michael W. Shannon, Dana Best, Helen J. Binns, Joel A. Forman, Christine L. Johnson, Catherine J. Karr, Janice J. Kim, James R. Roberts, Elizabeth Blackburn, Mark Anderson, Martha Linet, Walter Rogan, Paul Spire

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations

Abstract

Molds are multicellular fungi that are ubiquitous in outdoor and indoor environments. For humans, they are both beneficial (for the production of antimicrobial agents, chemotherapeutic agents, and vitamins) and detrimental. Exposure to mold can occur through inhalation, ingestion, and touching moldy surfaces. Adverse health effects may occur through allergic, infectious, irritant, or toxic processes. The cause-and-effect relationship between mold exposure and allergic and infectious illnesses is well known. Exposures to toxins via the gastrointestinal tract also are well described. However, the cause-and-effect relationship between inhalational exposure to mold toxins and other untoward health effects (eg, acute idiopathic pulmonary hemorrhage in infants and other illnesses and health complaints) is controversial and requires additional investigation. In this report we examine evidence of fungal-related illnesses and the unique aspects of mold exposure to children. Mold-remediation procedures are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e1909-e1926
JournalPediatrics
Volume118
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2006

Keywords

  • Allergies
  • Health effects
  • Hemosiderosis
  • Hypersensitivity pneumonitis
  • Mold exposure
  • Mycotoxins
  • Prevention
  • Remediation
  • Water damage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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