Can fibreglass cause asthma?
We have a 60 yr old lady that got loft insulation done with fibreglass. A few days later developed allergic symptoms not helped with antihistamines. She got admitted to hospital and felt better within a couple of hours away from the house and was discharged the following day. CT showed no alveolitis (only a 2mm granuloma RUL). On return to the house, she has recurrence of symptoms which always improve away from the house. This is despite the house being industrial cleaned. The history is suggestive of hypersensitivity to fibreglass. This lady asked for allergy tests for this
Fibreglass is a very unlikely cause of asthma, if this is what she has. Fibreglass is very itchy on the skin (a physical characteristic). The only documented causes of asthma from fibreglass is from monofilament fibreglass which is wound like wool for weaving. It is extruded through nozzles and coated with various materials including colohony, phenol formaldehyde and probably acrylates. It also requires a humid environment as it generates a lot of static, the humidifiers can cause asthma or alveolitis
There is one other reference that might be of interest.
Of interest but irrelevance we have seen a number of fibreglass laminators, mostly making hulls for boats, who have developed aggressive bronchiolitis. They have had huge exposures including lots of styrene
You patient is more likely to have something stirred up by the insulation. Most house-related asthma or alveolitis is due to moulds
Please sign in or register to add your thoughts.