Indoor Mold Allergens and Toxin Treatments
Indoor molds (fungi) produce a wide range of toxins and allergens (1). Many published studies have documented that exposure to heavy indoor mold growth and/or water damage can cause chronic health effects in humans.
INDOOR MOLD CAUSES MANY CHRONIC HEALTH PROBLEMS
Over 30 published papers have documented that heavy indoor mold exposure can worsen asthma and/or rhinitis (2, 3). Indoor mold exposure has been strongly associated with neurological and neurocognitive problems such as significantly poorer memory, concentration, balance and motor skills (1, 4) Heavy indoor mold exposure also been linked to the development of peripheral nerve damage such as chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP) (5).
SUCCESSFUL TREATMENT OF INDOOR MOLD RELATED HEALTH PROBLEMS
While mold exposure frequently causes long term (lasting years) health problems, most chronically mold exposed patients will slowly get better with time and mold avoidance. What are the best treatments for patients experiencing chronic health problems due to indoor mold or water damage exposure? Dr. Bill Rea of Dallas treated 100 patients with heavy mold exposure (6). Patients were treated with a wide range of therapies including remediation or removal of mold damaged indoor environments, mold antigen treatment, nutritional supplementation, sauna, and supplemental oxygen (6). About half of the mold patients cleared within 3 months, while the other half requiring as long as 18 months to clear. After 18 months, 85% of all patients cleared completely, 14% had partial improvement, and 1% remain unchanged (6).
OTHER TREATMENTS FOR MOLD AND MYCOTOXIN ILLNESS
Other research with mold/mycotoxin exposed humans and animals have reported that other treatment modalities can be helpful in reducing toxic effects of mold including supplementation with many nutrients including anti-oxidant vitamins, supplementation with glutathione/ n-acetyl cysteine, probiotic bacteria like Lactobacillus, and use of oral agents to sequester mycotoxins such as clay, cholestyramine, activated charcoal, and chlorella (7). Other research had suggested that sauna, exercise, and weight reduction may be useful for reducing mold/mycotoxin health problems (7).
- Curtis L, Lieberman AD, Rea W, Stark M, Vetter M. Adverse human health effects of indoor molds. Journal of Nutritional and Environmental Medicine. 2004;14(3):261-74.
- Jaakkola MS, Quansah R, Hugg TT, Heikkinen SA, Jaakkola JJ. Association of indoor dampness and molds with rhinitis risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2013;132(5):1099-110 e18.
- Quansah R, Jaakkola MS, Hugg TT, Heikkinen SA, Jaakkola JJ. Residential dampness and molds and the risk of developing asthma: a systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS One. 2012;7(11):e47526.
- Kilburn KH. Neurobehavioral and pulmonary impairment in 105 adults with indoor exposure to molds compared to 100 exposed to chemicals. Toxicol Ind Health. 2009;25(9-10):681-92.
- Lieberman A, Curtis LT, Campbell A. Development of new onset chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP) following exposure to a water damaged home with high airborne mold levels: a report of two cases and a review of the literature. Journal of Neurological Research. 2017;2017(In Press).
- Rea WJ. A Large Case-series of Successful Treatment of Patients Exposed to Mold and Mycotoxin. Clin Ther. 2018;40(6):889-93.
- Hope J. A review of the mechanism of injury and treatment approaches for illness resulting from exposure to water-damaged buildings, mold, and mycotoxins. ScientificWorldJournal. 2013;2013:767482.