Mold and Mycotoxins Affect Us All
May 02, 2016 03:22PM
By Dr. William Rea
The Environmental Health Center-Dallas is a leader in the field for recognizing, diagnosing and treating exposure to mold and its mycotoxins. They use accurate and concise laboratory analyses and diagnostic procedures to determine the effect of mold and mycotoxins on all parameters of a patient’s health.
Exposure to mold and mycotoxins is most likely for those that are bothered by musty odors; worked or lived in a building where the air vents were discolored; notice water damage or discoloration on ceilings or elsewhere; live in a home that has been flooded or has leaks in the roof. Symptoms include shortness of breath, recurring sinus infections, recurring bronchial infections and coughing, flu-like symptoms, an increase of symptoms on rainy days, frequent headaches, fatigue and a skin rash.
A person’s hypersensitivity response to mold and mycotoxins is accurately determined through individual intradermal screening of each mold. Molds are skin tested one at a time, so an accurate treatment dose can encompass both skin response, as well as symptom response to each individual mold. Several species of the most allergenic molds are also skin tested and treated to afford the patient more complete coverage of the mold’s allergic potential.
There is another dimension to mold exposure. It is the exposure to the chemical or mycotoxin produced by many molds. There are over 400 mycotoxins, most of which are cytotoxic. These fungal toxins are volatile organic compounds which are similar in structure to ketones, aldehydes, alcohols, and aromatic and aliphatic hydrocarbons. These fungal chemicals can be acutely or chronically toxic, depending on the kind and amount of toxin exposure. These fungal toxins are lipid soluble, and can be stored in organs and tissue producing serious health effects, including skin and pulmonary infections. They can be toxic to the liver, kidneys and nervous system, suppress the immune system and be carcinogenic.
Mold exposure is spore exposure, which can elicit allergic responses, and chemical exposure, which can be linked to organ damage. Those that have experienced exposure to aspergillius, penicillium, stachybotrys, chaetomium, rhizopus, trichoderma or other mycotoxin-producing saprophytic molds need expert diagnosis and treatment.
William J. Rea, M.D., is a thoracic and cardiovascular surgeon with a strong passion for the environmental aspects of health and disease. Founder of the Environmental Health Center (EHC-D), Dr. Rea is currently director of this highly specialized Dallas based medical facility.