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Mayo Clinic Reasearch on Sinusitis


"We can now begin to treat the cause of the problem instead of the symptoms"

ROCHESTER, MINN. -- Mayo Clinic researchers say they have found the cause of most chronic sinus infections -- an immune system response to fungus. They say this discovery opens the door to the first effective treatment for this problem, the most common chronic disease in the United States.

An estimated 37 million people in the United States suffer from chronic sinusitis, an inflammation of the membranes of the nose and sinus cavity. Its incidence has been increasing steadily over the last decade. Common symptoms are runny nose, nasal congestion, loss of smell and headaches. Frequently the chronic inflammation leads to polyps, small growths in the nasal passages which hinder breathing.

"Up to now, the cause of chronic sinusitis has not been known," say the Mayo researchers: Drs. David Sherris, Eugene Kern and Jens Ponikau , Mayo Clinic ear, nose and throat specialists. Their report appears in the September issue of the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

"Fungus allergy was thought to be involved in less than ten percent of cases," says Dr. Sherris. "Our studies indicate that, in fact, fungus is likely the cause of nearly all of these problems. And it is not an allergic reaction, but an immune reaction."

The researchers studied 210 patients with chronic sinusitis. Using new methods of collecting and testing mucus from the nose, they discovered fungus in 96 percent of the patients' mucus. They identified a total of 40 different kinds of fungi in these patients, with an average of 2.7 kinds per patient.

In a subset of 101 patients who had surgery to remove nasal polyps, the researchers found eosinophils (a type of white blood cell activated by the body's immune system) in the nasal tissue and mucus of 96 percent of the patients.

The results, the researchers say, clearly portray a disease process in which, in sensitive individuals, the body's immune system sends eosinophils to attack fungi and the eosinophils irritate the membranes in the nose. As long as fungi remain, so will the irritation.

"This a potential breakthrough that offers great hope for the millions of people who suffer from this problem," says Dr. Kern. "We can now begin to treat the cause of the problem instead of the symptoms."

More research is underway at Mayo Clinic to confirm that the immune response to the fungus is the cause of the sinus inflammation. The researchers are also working with pharmaceutical companies to set up trials to test medications to control the fungus. They estimate that it will be at least two years before a treatment will be widely available.

The researchers distinguish chronic sinusitis -- sinusitis that lasts three months or longer -- from acute sinusitis, which lasts a month or less. They say that the cause of the acute condition is usually a bacterial infection.

Antibiotics and over-the-counter decongestants are widely used to treat chronic sinusitis. In most cases, antibiotics are not effective for chronic sinusitis because they target bacteria, not fungi. The over-the-counter drugs may offer some relief of symptoms, but they have no effect on the inflammation. Medications haven't worked for chronic sinusitis because we didn't know what the because of the problem was," says Dr. Ponikau. "Finally we are on the trail of a treatment that may actually work."

Thousands of kinds of single-cell fungi (molds and yeasts) are found everywhere in the world. Fungal spores (the reproductive part of the organism) become airborne like pollen. Some people develop allergies to fungi. The new evidence from the Mayo study suggests that many people also develop a different kind of immune system response.

The above post is reprinted from Mayo Clinics provided by Q.A.C. Kevin GriffisMayo Clinic. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

                   

Mayo Clinic. "Mayo Clinic Study Implicates Fungus As Cause Of Chronic Sinusitis." Science Daily. Science Daily, 10 September 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/09/990910080344.htm>.

 You need to be treated by a physic an that understands this. Not             antibiotics and steroid nasal sprays.......Q.A.C.

 

Reular HVAC Tech';s Will have to Learn IAQ- Non-Contaminanted Indoor Air


     ATLANTA –Now, finally the regular HVAC techs are going to have to learn, study, and understand mold, bacteria, off-gassing, and all the contaminants that are created in the HVAC systems (The Environmental side of the HVAC). ASHRAE- the head HVAC Organization over the HVAC Industry and the Indoor Air Quality Association (IAQA) have agreedin principle to join forces, combining resources to improve indoor air quality in the builtenvironment.Pending a three to six-month period of due diligence, IAQA will become a part of theASHRAE organization while maintaining its own brand and Board of Directors. IAQA will operateindependently within ASHRAE’s organizational structure. Plans call for IAQA headquarters to relocate fromRockville, Md., to Atlanta, Ga., home of ASHRAE’s international headquarters. The agreement wasreached between the leadership of both associations and confirmed at ASHRAE’s 2014 Annual Conferencethat concluded earlier this month in Seattle,Wash.“This merger is beneficial to both ASHRAE and IAQA in that it strengthens the programs and servicesof both organizations,” Tom Phoenix, ASHRAE president, said. “The work of IAQA complements the workof ASHRAE in its standards, research, publications and educational offerings. We now combineour resources to ensure the industry receives the best indoor air quality technical guidance andeducational programs possible, which means improved indoor air quality for the world aroundus.”
Among ASHRAE’s major indoor air quality offerings are Standard 62.1, Ventilation for AcceptableIndoor Air Quality, and Standard 62.2, Ventilation and Acceptable Indoor Air Quality in Low-RiseResidential Buildings, and publications such as the Indoor Air Quality Guide: Best Practices for Design,Construction and Commissioning.

ASHRAE also recently announced the formation of the IndoorEnvironmental Quality Global Alliance, which included IAQA as a charter member. ASHRAE also has a strongresearchprogram related to indoor air quality with 10 current projects totaling $2.8 million, representing23 percent of ASHRAE’s researchbudget.
   
    “This merger allows IAQA to maintain its own brand while also providingits members with enhanced benefits and services,” Kent Rawhouser, president of IAQA, said. “Ourstrong history of programs and products is expected to not only continue, but to grow as the merger allowsusto take advantage of the resources and programs overseen by ASHRAE. Members of IAQA andASHRAE will work collaboratively to strengthen indoor air quality programs for the industry, andmostimportantly, for the people who occupy homes and buildings around theworld.”IAQA provides continuing education, conferences and expositions, certification programs,monthly webinars, technical publications and funds indoor air quality related research. IAQA subsidiary,Indoor Environmental Standards Organization (IESO), is an American National Standards Institute(ANSI) accredited standards developing organization focused on indoor air quality assessment,remediation and management of indoorenvironments.

ASHRAE and IAQA programs will be aligned to create high-impact resources for buildingprofessionals around theglobe.“Indoor air quality is vitally important to the health and welfare of people worldwide,” Phoenix said.“Air quality systems must work harmoniously with other systems in homes and buildings to ensure ahealthy and sustainable builtenvironment.”The Indoor Air Quality Association (IAQA) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bringingpractitioners together to prevent and solve indoor environmental problems for the benefit of customers andthe public. IAQA was established in 1995 and is the nation’s largest indoor air quality trade associationwith over 2,600 members and more than 20 local chapters across the United States and Canada.Moreinformation is available at IAGA.org and atIESO.org.ASHRAE, founded in 1894, is a global society advancing human well-being throughsustainable technologyforthebuiltenvironment.TheSocietyanditsmorethan50,000membersworldwidefocusonbuilding systems, energy efficiency, indoor air quality, refrigeration and sustainability. Throughresearch, standards writing, publishing, certification and continuing education, ASHRAE shapes tomorrow’sbuilt environment today. More information can be found atwww.ashrae.org/news.

Continuous Maintenance and Studies Under theASHRAE/IAQA Standards and Guidelines Under Continuous Maintenance ASHRAE Guideline 0, The CommissioningProcessASHRAE Guideline 10, Interactions Affecting the Achievement of Acceptable IndoorEnvironments ASHRAE Guideline 20, Documenting HVAC&R Work Processes and Data ExchangeRequirements ANSI/ASHRAE 52.2, Method of Testing General Ventilation Air Cleaning Devices for Removal EfficiencybyParticleSizeANSI/ASHRAE 55, Thermal Environmental Conditions for HumanOccupancyANSI/ASHRAE 62.1, Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor AirQuality*ANSI/ASHRAE 62.2, Ventilation and Acceptable Indoor Air Quality in Low-Rise ResidentialBuildings ANSI/ASHRAE/IES 90.1, Energy Standard for Buildings, Except Low-Rise ResidentialBuildings ANSI/ASHRAE 90.2, Energy Efficient Design of Low-Rise ResidentialBuildingsANSI/ASHRAE 140, Standard Method of Test for the Evaluation of Building Energy AnalysisComputer ProgramsANSI/ASHRAE 145.2, Laboratory Test Method for Assessing the Performance of Gas-Phase AirCleaning Systems: Air CleaningDevicesANSI/ASHRAE 147, Reducing the Release of Halogenated Refrigerants from Refrigerating andAir- Conditioning Equipment andSystemsANSI/ASHRAE 154, Ventilation for Commercial CookingOperations ANSI/ASHRAE 160, Criteria for Moisture-Control Design Analysis inBuildings ANSI/ASHRAE/ASHE 170, Ventilation of Health CareFacilitiesANSI/ASHRAE/USGBC/IES 189.1, Standards for the Design of High-Performance Green BuildingsExceptLow-Rise ResidentialBuildiASHRAE Guideline 10, Interactions Affecting the Achievement of Acceptable IndoorEnvironments Education Courses: IAQA offers training courses for workers, technicians and supervisor/managerson IEQ investigations, microbial remediation and more. To ensure the highest quality indoorenvironmental education, IAQA-approved training providers are extensively vetted by IAQA’s EducationCommittee.Course curriculum is based on the very latest research, standards andscience.


1.    What's all the fuss about "indoor" airpollution?    I always thought "outdoor" air pollution wasthe mainproblem?Scientific evidence indicates the air within homes and other buildings can be two to five timesmore polluted than the outdoor air, and in some cases 1,000 times more polluted. Today people arespending nearly90%oftheirtimeindoors,agreatincreaseasopposedto twentyyearsago.Thus,the"dose"(i.e. the concentration of pollutants multiplied by the time in that environment) is typically greaterindoors than outdoors. This results in a greater health risk due to exposure to air pollution indoorsthan outdoors.
2.    Are some individuals at greater risk to indoor air pollution thanothers?Yes, individuals who spend the longest periods of time indoors are often those most susceptible tothe adverse effects of indoor air pollution. Such groups include babies, the elderly, the infirm orbedridden, and those with chronic illnesses, such as respiratory or cardiovasculardisease.Top ofPage
3.    What causes indoor air qualityproblems?Two mainitems:1.  Pollutant sources: building materials and furnishings; biologicals; products for janitorial cleaning, personal care, or activities used in offices; no IAQA maintenance of central heating and cooling systems and humidification devices and older duct work and improper return plenums;pesticides; past roof and plumbing leaks or other types of water intrusion, high condensation, and dew points.
2.   Poor ventilation: If too little outdoor air enters a building, pollutants can accumulate to levels that can pose health and discomfort problems. Indoor air quality began to decline in the 1970's after the "energy crisis" prompted the building of "tight" houses and office buildings. Spaces around doors and windows where outside air might previously have leaked through are now often sealed by caulking and weather- stripping. The introduction of fresh "makeup" air through air handling systems many times is reduced or even eliminated to save the cost of the energy to heat or cool this fresh air. Indoor air pollutants cannot easily escape these tightly constructed buildings.
4.    How does indoor air pollution affect yourhealth?Health effects can include irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat, headaches, dizziness, fatigue,and allergy-type symptoms. Usually these symptoms are short-term, and disappear when the person isaway from the source. More serious symptoms such as asthma, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, andhumidifier fever can also affect some individuals after exposure to certain indoor air pollutants. There isa tremendous amount of variation in the sensitivity among individuals to indoor air pollutants.Some people may never experience any symptoms while others may truly suffer. Because manysymptoms may be difficult to distinguish from viruses, or allergies; care mustbe taken to determine if symptoms are worse while in a particular building versus outside, or whetherthey dissipate when a person is away for severaldays.Top of Page
5.  What are some of the major indoor air pollutants that might be found in a home or office building?Typical pollutantsinclude:

Biologicals: Bacteria, mold and mildew, viruses, animal dander, pollen, dust mites. These are morelikely to be a problem in buildings with high humidity, or water-damage and non-maintained HVAC Systems.

Past building design issues, vapor barriers, condensation issues, unbalanced air-flow patterns, and design.

Sewer gases: from blocked traps, dry cut off traps, changes in remodeling and plumbing, non-working vent pipes for methane and other sewer gases in older buildings.

Carbon Monoxide: From unvented gas heaters; leaking chimneys or furnaces; gas stoves;automobile exhaust. Low levels can cause headaches, flu-like symptoms. High levels can befatal.

Organic Gases: From janitorial and construction products including: paints, paint strippers, and other solvents;wood preservatives; aerosol sprays; cleansers and disinfectants; moth repellents and air fresheners;stored fuels and automotive products; hobby supplies; dry-cleanedclothing.

Formaldehyde: Usually from pressed wood products (hardwood plywood paneling, particleboard, fiberboard) and furniture made with pressed wood products; or urea-formaldehyde foam insulation.

 

 

Detecting and Eliminating Causes of Coil Corrosion and Mold/Fungal Growth

Staff trained on proper execution of Eco-Friendly products and sevices
Detecting and Eliminating Causes of Coil Corrosion and all Bio-Growth
“Providing Solutions for a Healthy Indoor Environment”
Quality Air Consultants – EPA Certified
 
Parts of Blog; by Alan H. Brothers, Ph.D. and Q.A.C. and by Kevin Griffis CIAQ, CIE, EPA Certified in Safe HVAC Environmental Techniques, and the recent Techniques and products for proper maintenance and efficacy, and longevity, of you HVAC and promoting good Indoor Air Quality Controls.
 
External coil corrosion appears to be on the rise. While the possible causes of coil corrosion can stem from poorly manufactured copper, as the prices of copper went up, the manufactures made the copper tubing thinner and less longevity, chemical residue from coil manufacturing, and other problems that initiate the corrosion process long before the coils arrive on a job-site, the majority of problems occur when environmental acids corrode coils from the outside in.
On the coastal areas which also means 100 -150 miles inward the spoil is full of sulfides, such as hydrogen sulfide, acids, which is corrosive to copper, these elements rise from the ground as gasses and enter the condensation produced by the coils and fins and the water becomes corrosive. Also you have salt in the air, a corrosive, acid rain; everyone has seen the rust and corrosion along coastal areas. This rusting, deterioration, and corrosion is happening in every air handler in the area and by the time we get to look at units it is already in a heavy process along the coils and no service or maintenance has done any prevention for this problem; which by the way is the number “1” effect that causes and will determine the live of a HVAC system.
With the cost of copper rising and the HVAC manufacture’s stretching and thinning of the copper used to save cost, and the fact of no preventatives being applied during maintenance, you HVAC does not have any thing preventing this deterioration inside the air handler. Consumer activist groups have found the expected time before a Freon leak due to corrosion is in the first 5 years; and needing new fins and coils about the same.
These units properly maintained for the environmental issues of the HVAC would last 15-20 years with a micro-shield type sealant that is applied every year to coat all metal, copper, aluminum components of the air handler and it is mold proof and prevents rust as it is a UV Teflon mold-proof, moisture proof coating.
*Remember as the activist groups quickly found out the manufacture’s goal is to sell you a new unit every 7 ½ years.
We recommend to person buying a new unit or building a home to have the units sealed with all the environmental sealants before installation.
There is also a product called a “fin-saver” that attaches to the copper line, outside or near unit as it is one continuous copper line that runs from the outside compressor into the air-handler through the fins and back out to compressor. This device has diodes in it that wrap around the copper pipe and change the molecular structure of the copper that does makes it corrosive and stops the main corrosion from happening. This is a no-fail device as it is not electric or mechanical in anyway, needs no maintenance, just installation.
So with a shield approved by EPA – Safe Environmental HVAC techniques and a fin saver installed, and maintenance once a year with the sealant, you unit could go back to the 20 year longevity it should have.
A case in point is For example, a rooftop unit in a coastal area could be corroded from ocean salt. Household bleaches, aerosol sprays, high humidity, and other prevalent factors found in every home can damage an indoor residential unit coil. An abundance of fertilizers, industrial plant processes, pollution, or acid rain can corrode outdoor condensing coils.
The following list illustrates sources of coil corrosion that could be overlooked by service technicians on commercial HVAC systems:
·         fermenting yeast (lactic acid from milk) in a bakery walk-in cooler
·         chlorine from an indoor swimming pool or aquatic process
·         urine (ammonia) from dead animals in meat processing plant coolers
·         sulfur from well water used in cleaning coils or rooms with coils
·         fertilizer (ammonia) in agricultural building evaporation coolers
 
Two Types of Environmental Corrosion
The two most common forms of coil corrosion are pitting and formicary. These two corrosive processes can occur in as little as a few weeks after installation. More typically, corrosion will begin appearing within a one-to-four-year period. The ability to distinguish between pitting and formicary corrosion might help detect and eliminate the cause. For example, pitting is typically caused by the presence of chlorides or fluorides. Chlorides are found in numerous items such as snow-melting crystals, toilet bowl/tile cleaners, dishwasher detergents, fabric softeners, vinyl fabrics, carpeting, paint strippers, etc. Fluorides are used in many municipal water treatment plants. Pitting, which appears on the exterior of the copper tube, is usually visible to the naked eye. It is caused by an aggressive attack of an anion, which is a negative-charged chemical species. The anions search for positive-charged species called cations, which are abundant in copper. Pitting will eventually break through to the inside of the tubing and create a leaking condition.
Formicary corrosion is associated with pinholes in the copper tube walls. Although this type of pinhole corrosion is not usually visible to the naked eye, some black or blue-gray deposits often can be seen on the surface. Formicary corrosion also exhibits a subsurface network of microscopic corroded tunnels within the tubing wall that resemble ant nest-type structures, immensely larger than the surface pinholes above them. Formicary corrosion is caused by organic acids such as acetic and formic acids. Acetic acids or the derivative acetate are abundant in numerous household products such as adhesives, paneling, particle board, silicone caulking, cleaning solvents, vinegar, foam insulation, and dozens of other commonly found products in the home or commercial/industrial workplace. Formic acid can be found in cosmetics, disinfectants, tobacco and wood smoke, latex paints, plywood, and dozens of other materials.
Given these common products containing organic acids attack copper, it is not surprising that coil corrosion occurs at alarming rates. The rise in corrosion the last 20 years might also be aggravated by the trend in tighter building construction methods, which allows less outside air induction to dilute or clear away these corrosive, indoor buildups. Even so, both pitting and formicary corrosions need two additional ingredients—oxygen and water. While oxygen is nearly unavoidable, limiting moisture might help the service technician fight or decelerate the problem.
This is a two headed problem as too much condensation inside the air-handler and it sitting in the condensation tray or pan cause corrosion and fungal and bacterial growth. Yes, this does include the toxic molds and air-borne spores that are called “mycotoxins” that are inhaled by the occupant; there are also air borne organisms of bacteria.
So the answer would be; to eliminate the most of the condensation in the unit, get it out as fast as possible when running, and also not let it sit in the trays while unit is off and water is stagnate.  
EPA Safe Environmental Techniques and QAC have a end of the line “Trap pump” which works as your trap in condensation line and keeps the condensation water primed like a water pump.
  •  The trap being installed at the end can let the water line be straight coming out of unit instead of a normal “U” shaped trap right outside unit (within a foot of unit); which is the major cause of stoppage and clogged lines that causes flooding of the HVAC. Your trap pump works the same except at the end of line in which is does not allow the sludge and bacteria/fungal build-up to be large enough to block and get caught in trap right outside unit. By the time debris runs all the way through line it is broken up and dissolved and will not clog the pump.
  •  The pump captures the negative air flow that helps push the water out of unit and keep it primed so more than 30% more water is expelled while unit is running.* In mid-summer time a 3 ton unit will produce 7-9 pounds of water per hour!
  • The pump has a seal in it that when the unit shuts off; cycles as we call it, the pump will seal the line and hold the water in line, even in a 4-5 hundred foot long line; otherwise in a normal line with just an open end, the water is pulled back up line and into unit and sits until the unit cycles on again. So the pump promises the water is primed and held in line the moment the unit cycles, and no water will recede into the unit and fill trays with stagnate water.
  • Also with a normal open end line outside, the unit then cycles on and we have timed it taking up to 45 minutes before the first drops of water come out of condensation line. It has to prime itself every time it cycles. This is eliminated by the pump which you can at anytime go out and take the top off and lift the seal, and see the “tap clean” water sitting in the pump, ready to go.
  • This is also a “no-fail” component; no electricity, no mechanical.
In summary, you are stopping chances of a clogged trap and flooding, you are keeping the water out of unit that grows mold and bacteria, you are expelling 30 % more water out of unit, and also holding the water in the line ready primed to immediately start coming out of line when unit cycles on; instead of having to prime itself. Maintenance would be taking top off and cleaning once a year as to grass clippings, debris from yard, shrubs, and weeds, etc.
In our now “Go-Green world” we have put the water you are manufacturing in your unit to work, as having the pump in a flower garden or herb area to water them during day, as the pump sometime can get going so fast it is like a small sprinkler.
And no forgetting stopping corrosion as water is not again sitting in unit and puddling in bottom of casing, or insulation siding on the doors or floor of the unit inside and being blown around by the blower fan.
 
Galvanic Corrosion
When two dissimilar metals, such as copper tubing and aluminum fins, are in contact with each other, a "galvanic couple" is formed, and the phenomenon of galvanic corrosion occurs. In this galvanic couple, the metal that corrodes and the metal that is protected depend on their relative positions in the galvanic series. Moisture is again a key factor in this corrosive process because it acts as the electrolyte needed in the reaction. Sea water accelerates the galvanic reaction because of its higher conductivity than fresh water and because salts can destroy the protective barriers on metal surfaces. The potential for galvanic corrosion is always present between two dissimilar metals. But how quickly galvanic corrosion results in system damage depends on variables like the electrolyte conductivity, the amount of oxygen present and relative surface areas of each metal. The preventatives and fin savers prevent this corrosion from taking place; it does not let the water reach the metal surfaces or copper surfaces as it is coated with the UV Teflon microbial sealant.
 
 
 
Keeping Coils Clean to Fight Corrosion and Fungal /Bacteria Growth
Outdoor condensing coils can best fight corrosion with periodic cleaning. Water is suitable, but existing corrosion and buildup typically are removed more completely with a coil cleaner. Numerous Eco-Friendly acid-based and alkaline-based coil cleaners are available. However, proper rinsing is important to avoid the coil cleaner chemical residue that could initiate the corrosion process. Some alkaline cleaners tout the fact that they are "non-acid" to capitalize on the belief that acids cause corrosion. However, alkaline cleaners also need to be rinsed thoroughly just like acid-based cleaners because alkaline residues can also corrode aluminum and other materials.
Outdoor coils located in areas where corrosives are prevalent, such as heavy industrial areas with acid rain or coastal areas where ocean salt is a factor, should have frequently scheduled, periodic cleanings.
Corrosion from the Manufacturing Process
While no available statistics reveal the extent of environmental corrosion, it may cause the majority of coil corrosion problems. However, the manufacturing process itself can also initiate coil corrosion prior to installation. Manufacturing problems can be related to anything from poorly constructed copper tubing or lubricants coil manufactures use at their plants.
Replacing coils corroded during the manufacturing process or using substandard copper may not alleviate corrosion because the problem may be inherent in the product. This is where environmental investigation comes in and it is determined the best action to take, and a protocol set for the maintenance of the particular unit.
Coatings to Protect Coils from Corrosion
Protective coatings are an option for new coils that are destined for corrosive applications and for existing coils that have been repeatedly replaced due to corrosion. Numerous coatings exist. However, most coil coatings are composed of either silanes or polymers, but the best is a Teflon microbial coating. The advantage of coatings is they make coils virtually corrosion-proof when properly applied and maintained. Reducing corrosion can improve long-term performance and reduce replacement costs. New coils with coatings can be oversized to offset the heat transfer loss. Some coating manufacturers actually claim an increase in heat transfer, due to the way in which water condenses and drips off coated coils.
For existing coils, some coatings can be applied in the field by QAC specialists who clean and then spray a coating on the coil. Other coatings can be applied by service technicians in the field. Whether a field application is possible depends mostly on the depth of the coil. Other coatings require sending the coil to the coating manufacturer or a specially-trained applicator. Probably the most difficult area to reach with a coating is the gap between the fin and tube. There are two common types of coil coatings, and both differ greatly in chemical make-up and performance: the best time to do this is when a new unit is going to be installed, as the ducts, plenums, and the air-handler can be sealed.
When preparing to make a service call concerning a corroded coil, identify the type of corrosion then search for environmental cause(s). If possible, eliminate the source of corrosion. For irretrievable sources, coatings might be the only answer. Call an Environmentally trained HVAC technician that is Certified in both the regular HVAC operations and the environmental side of the HVAC as well.
Just recently the IAQA (Indoor Air Quality Assoc.) and ASHRAE the HVAC technicians lead organization and oversee of HVAC procedures have joined forces to enlighten the HVAC tech to the Environmental side of the main culprit of poor Indoor Air Quality, Sick Building Syndrome, and the health and illness’ that can be inhaled by occupants or employees as they inhale the “conditioned air” in a home or building. The understanding and awareness has taken place to understand the importance and severity of toxins being inhaled and ingested by persons when an HVAC system has not been maintained by environmentally trained technicians.
All chemicals used in Remediation or Maintenance of HVAC EPA approved and CDC Safe Eco-Friendly Products.
 
 
Bio:Dr. Alan H. Brothers is a senior materials engineer for Mainstream Engineering, Rockledge, Fla., a leading research & development company specializing in thermal control and heat pump development. Brothers has a Bachelor's Degree in Engineering and Applied Science from California Institute of Technology, and a doctorate in Materials Science and Engineering from Northwestern University. Brothers continued his doctoral research on the processing and properties of light metals under a Helmholtz Fellowship from the Hahn-Meitner Institute in Berlin. Additionally he has researched the corrosion of aluminum in organic liquids and the use of coatings to mitigate corrosion in aluminum and galvanized steel HVAC components. He is the author or co-author of twelve peer-reviewed technical publications and a number of conference presentations
Q.A.C. – Quality Air Consultants is the oldest and original environmental company is the south GA. area for the consulting, assessments, and Remediation and Maintaining of HVAC systems for a Quality Indoor Air in Commercial or Residential Settings Offers maintenance Contracts for companies and residential HVAC systems to ensure healthy and safe air Indoors. Testing and Analysis is available also.
Sick Building Syndrome is when a company or office building has contaminated and poor Indoor Air quality, and complaints from employees.
Studies have been done to prove when these type companies HVAC systems and indoor air is environmentally maintained by Certified Company that absenteeism goes down rapidly, Production goes up dramatically, and the overall well-being of workforce has better work habits, attitudes improve, and office employee energy is improved.

Indoor Mold Exposure and Asthma Risk

News Letter on Research Provided To You By:
Quality Air Consultants
 
 
 
Indoor Mold Exposure Can Post Health Risk To Asthma Patients


MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. Richard Sharpe PhD
Study – Health and Housing
European Centre for Environment and Human Health
University of Exeter Medical school
Knowledge Spa, Royal Cornwall Hospital
Truro, Cornwall,

Medical Research: What are the main findings of the study?
Dr. Sharpe: By systematically reviewing the findings from 17 studies across 8 different countries, we’ve found that increased levels of the fungal species Penicillium, Aspergillus, and Cladosporium can pose a significant health risk to people with
. The presence of these fungi in the home can worsen symptoms in both children and adults.Recent indoor air testing shows an increase in these mold's and the airborne spores they produce which are inhaled and ingested by the occupants.
Medical Research: Were any of the findings unexpected?

Dr. Sharpe: Dampness and fungal contamination in the home has been consistently shown to increase the risk of asthma and the severity of its symptoms. Fungi are ubiquitous in indoor and outdoor environments, and most studies have focused on visible fungi and moldy odors or on identifying fungi to the genera, but not on the type of species. This is important to consider because there are many different allergenic fungal species, but it is not clear how the diversity and indoor concentrations are influenced by occupant behaviors, the built and outdoor environment. Majority of the evidence reviewed focuses on the exacerbation of asthma symptoms, and few assess their role in the development of asthma. So far Aspergillus and Penicillium species have already been linked to an increase in the risk of asthma development in children, but we know little about the effects of the other species we considered.
HVAC contamination has become one of the main contributors of these molds, as most I.A.Q. personnel have found the proper maintenance and sanitizing of the units have not been done and people are unaware to the environmental side of the HVAC's performance. If infected with these molds the units are blowing out toxic spores into the indoors; the "conditioned air" we now breathe if found with these spores is just cycling the air throughout the entire indoor air quality.
Medical Research: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?
Dr. Sharpe:Characterized by typically high humidity, homes with poor heating and ventilation can be a haven for house dust mites and mold. Dampness is one of the major factors affecting the growth of mold inside homes – a problem which has been on the rise as aging houses are sealed and retrofitted with new energy efficient technology. We currently know very little about how people’s living habits can contribute to indoor air quality, and ultimately affect their health. This study highlights the need for homes to have adequate heating, ventilation and home maintenance – all factors that will help to reduce the presence of mold and its effects on asthma symptoms. Again have I.A.Q. personnel determine the climate in which you live and how to adjust the dew points, temperature inversions, and humidity's.
Medical Research: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Dr. Sharpe: We recommend that future studies should consider the adoption of a multidisciplinary approach using both molecular and epidemiologic tools to accurately estimate the extent and timing of exposures and reliably assess their potential health effects.
Citation:
Richard A. Sharpe, Nick Bearman, Christopher R. Thornton, Kerryn Husk, Nicholas J. Osborne. Indoor fungal diversity and asthma: A meta-analysis and systematic review of risk factors. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 2014; DOI: 10.1016/j.jaci.2014.07.002
 

Physician in practice over 30 years.Editor of MedicalResearch.com. All interviews conducted exclusively for MedicalResearch.com by Marie Benz, MD.
This entry was posted in Allergies, Author Interviews by Marie Benz MD FAAD. Bookmark the permalink.
 
 
 
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Aspergillus: 1 of TOP 4 Missed Diagnosises in the U.S.

A recent U.S. study systematically surveyed 31 reports, giving a total of nearly 6,000 autopsies.  Of these cases, anywhere from 6 to 100% showed evidence of misdiagnosis - indicating that the doctors diagnosed and then treated incorrectly, which presumably often contributed to death of their patients. 
 
28% of all autopsies in the study revealed evidence of at least one missed diagnosis, and 8% evidence of a Class I (Goldman criteria) error which means that the misdiagnosis could have contributed to, or directly caused an unecessary death (the most common of which were heart attack, pulmonary embolism, artery blockage in the lungs, pneumonia and aspergillosis).  Aspergillosis is a fungal infectious disease caused by toxic molds of the genus Aspergillus through inhalation or ingestion of the air-borne spores (mycotoxins) produced by the fungal growth.
 
This is clearly a serious issue, and one estimate given for the United States is that 40,500 deaths occur in Intensive Care Units every year as aresult of misdiagnosis.  Given that aspergillus is one of the most common of these, (up to 30% of Class I Misdiagnosises - though the paper is not clear on this).  Sadly, this could account for up to 13,000 potentially preventable deaths a year, had patients been properly diagnosed and then treated for the correct condition.  For a rare infection such as aspergillosis, that number of deaths would represent a substantial increase in the number of recorded fatal infections per year.
 
This suggests  several causes of underdiagnoseses, but the principle factor is suggested to be the lack of autopsies carried out to check Clinicians original diagnosis - the rate of autopsies carried out for this purpose has been steadily falling over many years, in many countries, including the United States and Europe. 
 
Aspergillus is the most common toxic mold found in the Southeast US in Indoor Air Quality testing and could be directly related to any and all respiratory illness' and symptoms. If you or anyone in your family or business is experiencing respiratory symptoms  it would be recommended to have your indoor air quality tested to determine if mycotoxins are present in your indoor environment as this may result in the re-evaluation of your treatment and diagnosis. From sinusitis to lung disease present in any home or dwelling; no matter the age, condition, or construction, it is strongly recommmended that you have the indoor air environment tested for your quality of treatment, providing all the evidence that may be affecting you, and to ensure a proper diagnosis so that all factors and causes have been taken into consideration in your care.
 

FYI!!!: Recent Outbreak of Fungal Meningitis in the US

Aspergillus and Cladosporium are the two most common toxic  molds detected upon testing by Quality Air Consultants in the interiors of both  professional offices and residential homes.  The Latest News from the the United States on the recent fungal mengitis outbreak is that 300 suspected cases have now been recorded (54 confirmed by the CDC), sadly with 23 deaths across 16 States. There are likely 14,000 patients who may have been exposed to the contaminated preparation of Methylprednisolone Acetate and 3 contaminating fungi have been detected:  Exserohylium Rostratum, Aspergillus Fumigatus and Cladosporium.  Additionally, there  have been 3 cases of joint infection where the contaminated injectable solution was utilized.  CDC current update:  The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have released complete lists of all customers supplied with the suspect batch of medication and a complete listing of all recalled drugs.  Further vigilance by individuals is being encouraged, as the incubation period for Aspergillus infections can be as long as four weeks or longer

"Not Another Antibiotic!" A personal experience...

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"Not another antibiotic," I complained to the doctor.  "I've already taken two rounds without success.  I really don't think it will do any good."  As I sat in the fourth doctor's office in the past six months, I began to experience extreme frustration.  Not only had I been sick for half a year, but every doctor I'd tried pronounced the same diagnosis, "chronic sinusitis", and prescribed the same treatment, antibiotics.  Each time I proceeded with the suggested course of action, my symptoms would improve short term, only to return a few weeks later.  It was abundantly clear to me that antibiotics were not the answer and neither were all of the natural therapies I had tried; however, I found it nearly impossible to convince any medical professional of this fact.
 
Feeling both disappointment and defeat, I began to realize that it was going to be up to me to determine the cause of my illness and also the remedy.  After reading several books and web pages, I determined that my symptoms were all common to one specific culprit.  My chronic sinusitis, sore throat, clogged ears, itchy skin, headaches, and fatigue could all be caused by...mold.  To further support my conclusion, a Mayo Clinic research study designated fungus as the root cause of most cases of sinusitis. 
 
How would I know if mold was making me sick?  After skimming over an advertisement in the local newspaper one fateful day, I decided to give Quality Air Consultants a call.  From the moment I spoke with owner Kevin Griffis, I felt a sense of relief.  He knew and understood my situation thoroughly and was willing to do anything within his power to help.  A few days after speaking with me, he air-tested my home for mold, and sure enough, the levels were astronomically high for a safe living environment.  Kevin and his staff cleaned the HVAC system, fogged the building, and applied a special sealant to prevent further mold growth.  Following the clean-up they did a repeat air test, which he copied to me, revealing that the mold infestation was abated.
 
Within days, my symptoms began to improve.  My sinuses cleared and my energy began to increase.  I felt as though I had my life back.  Unlike most home renovation/remediation companies, Kevin closely monitored my progress through periodic emails and/or phone calls.  Months later when my symptoms returned, he immediately came to my home for a repeat air test free of charge.  When the test revealed mold levels had again started to rise, he searched high and low until he discovered a small,  hidden box in the attic off the air system where mold continued to grow. Quality Air Consultants removed the box and fogged my home again free of charge.
 
Today I still struggle with mold exposure.  As Kevin and I have discovered, I am unfortunately a highly sensitive individual where mold is concerned, and it can be difficult to convince employers of the severity and devastating effects of toxic mold exposure.  However, I have been thoroughly impressed and grateful for Kevin's dedication and diligence in providing continuous mold remediation service for my living environment.  He has demonstrated a care and concern for me as a customer and as a human being that is extremely rare in the business world.  I now consider Kevin a life-long friend, and I truly believe me would do anything within his power to ensure my health is not adversely affected by mold exposure.  I feel very confident in recommending Quality Air Consultants to anyone who is struggling with unexplained symptoms that not alleviated by conventional or holistic medical care.  Perhaps it's the air that you innocently breath each day that's making you sick!

New Blog Coming- A break-through here in S.E. GA.

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6 out of 10 Severe Astmatics have Mold in their Lungs

Over the last 30 years evidence has been accumulating that many people who develop severe asthma also show evidence of a fungus (mold) in their lungs called Aspergillus.
Many readers will be familiar with aspergillus as the fungal mold that can cause severe invasive infections in mostly immunocompromised people. High Risk, low immune; include children, elderly, patients with illness', and some medicines that can lower the immune system. But realize that Aspergillus at high levels can also effect persons who are completely healthy. 
Chronic infections caused by Aspergillus are CPA which is "Chronic Pulmonary Aspergillosis", shows up in many patients with scarred airways or lung tissue due to previous infections. Once scarred the airways tend to lose their 'cleaning system' for that area, allowing infections to settle in.
Apart from these exceptions people who have healthy immune systems are pretty safe from infection by Aspergillus- except for asthma and Allergic Bronchopulmonary Aspergillosis (ABPA).
ABPA is a well described condition effecting some immunocompetant people who develop a chronic non-invasive infection in their lungs. People vulnerable to this include asthma and cystic fibrosis.
Asthmatics; around 25-50% have fungal sensitivity (SAFS), equating to about 1-3 million persons in the US. Some doctors are already treating SAFS with an anti-fungal medication with good success.
Good Indoor Air Quality can reduce and eliminate these aspergillus spores from the indoor environment, where for example children now spend well over 90% of their time.