Health Effects of Mold Exposure
Ralph Potkin, M.D., FACP, FCCP
E-Mail-- Dr.Ralph Potkin
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- The following list reflects current "medical community" knowledge of the effects of exposing the human body to mold.
- People exposed to molds may develop a variety of illness, some of which can be quite serious.
- Fungal infections are known to occur in approximately 10% of hospitalized patients. It was only a few years ago that doctors were unaware of the serious nature of these "hospital acquired" fungal infections.
- Certain foods contaminated with some molds may cause cancer.
- A variety of respiratory illnesses may be due to mold exposure or mold infections.
- Rarely, molds can cause serious "hypersensitivity reactions" or pneumonia in people exposed to high concentrations of mold over a prolonged period of time.
- Molds can cause allergies affecting the eyes, ears, nose and throat and can cause hay fever and even asthma.
- Molds exposure and infections have been associated with chronic fatigue, depression and other systemic complaints.
- The Center for Disease Control and other agencies are actively investigating the role of molds in causing disease in people and what treatments may be required.