Environment and asthma - Twitter summary from 2012 #AAAAI meeting

This summary was compiled from the tweets posted by the following allergists/immunologists who attended the 2012 annual meeting of the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI):  Robert Silge, MD @DrSilge. The tweets were labeled #AAAAI. The text was edited and modified by me.

Exposure to cleaning products roughly doubles the risk of asthma.

Very frequent (4 times per week) use of bleach was associated with increasred risk of asthma, but lower risk of atopy. Use of bleach has been shown to reduce asthma symptoms in kids, so everything is a balancing act.

Hand dermatitis is common in cleaners. Those with rash were significantly more likely to have asthma than those without.

Air refreshing sprays were also strongly associated with asthma symptoms in one study. There are often used at least weekly. D-limonene, a common citrus fragrance, was associated with work-related asthma in one study.

Are "green" cleaners better? They can contain d-limonene, colophony (from pine), and be more concentrated. They could be actually be worse for asthmatics.

Quaternary ammonium seems to act as an irritant as well as a sensitizer. “Double whammy”.

It is important to consider VCD, dysphonia, etc. in those exposed to cleaning products.

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