Occupational Asthma Reference

ChanYeung M, Occupational asthma. [Review], Environ Health Perspect, 1995;103:Suppl 6:249-52,

Keywords: Canada, oa, review, irritant, rads

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Moira Chan-Yeung, University of Hong Kong Moira Chan-Yeung

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Many toxic compounds found in air emissions may induce bronchoconstriction. In the workplace, workers are exposed to these compounds, often in much higher concentrations. Some of these compounds act as sensitizers. Of these, some compounds induce asthma by producing specific IgE antibodies to the compound or its protein conjugate, while others induce asthma through yet unidentified immunologic mechanisms. Some compounds, when inhaled in high concentrations, act as irritants and produce bronchoconstriction probably by inducing acute airway inflammation. The latter condition is called Reactive Airways Dysfunction Syndrome (RADS) or irritant-induced asthma. Occupational asthma is an excellent model to study the pathogenesis and the natural history of adult onset asthma because the responsible agent can be identified, complete avoidance is possible, and exposure can be measured or estimated.

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