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Minerva Pneumologica 2011 March;50(1):31-46

language: English

Respiratory protection: domestic air quality and lung health

Rennie D. C. 1,2, Lawson J. A. 1

1 Canadian Centre for Health and Safety in Agriculture, University of Saskatchewan, SK, Canada
2 College of Nursing, University of Saskatchewan, SK, Canada


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Poor domestic air quality creates challenges for adults and children living with lung disease. This review will describe the role of household environmental triggers in the occurrence and exacerbation of respiratory illnesses such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Major sources of air pollution in households include nitrogen dioxide, endotoxin, allergens, environmental tobacco smoke and volatile organic compounds. Remediation of the environment to prevent or reduce indoor exposures that can exacerbate lung disease and affect quality of life requires knowledge of the properties of indoor pollutants as well as an understanding of groups at risk for symptoms or disease. Gene-environment and environment-environment interactions with respiratory outcomes challenge the remediation process and require consideration when evaluating the effects of environmental interventions. Strategies must reflect the unique circumstances of the individual and the environment.

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