Indoor Airborne Spore Levels Before and After Healthy Homes Education and Remediation

M. G. Dhar, F. Pacheco, C. Barnes,

Author address: 

C. Childrens Mercy Center for Environmental Health; Children’s Mercy Hospital, Kansas City, MO.


RATIONALE: Asthmatic children are often sensitization to airborne fungi yet many live in homes containing poor indoor air quality (IAQ). To examine the reduction in airborne spores at the beginning and after 6 months enrolment in a Healthy Homes program the following studies were conducted. METHODS: Homes enrolled in this project contained at least one child with asthma. Homes were evaluated for indoor and outdoor environmental conditions related to the maintenance of IAQ at the time of enrolment and after 6 months of participation in a healthy homes program. After enrolment, residents of these homes received education on maintaining a safe and healthy home along with assistance in remediating unsafe or unhealthy IAQ conditions in the home. Air collections were taken using a BioAire Model B520 spore trap both before and after education/ remediation at two locations outside the home and at 5 locations inside the home. Air collections were evaluated microscopically for commonly identified spores. RESULTS: Results from the first 10 homes to fully complete the study indicate the major fungal spores present include Cladosporium (before 97% of collections; after 90% of collections); Aspergillus/Penicillium (87%/75%); Alternaria (35%/45%) and Stachybotrys (24%/6%). Overall spore reductions in the child’s bedroom for these 10 homes included Stachybotrys (100%), Aspergillus/Penicillium (55%). Mean total indoor spore levels were reduced from 24% of outdoor ambient levels before the healthy homes program to 16% of outdoor ambient levels at completion. CONCLUSIONS: Healthy homes education along with remediation for unsafe or unhealthy conditions resulted in substantial reduction in airborne fungal spore exposure.

abstract No: 

Indoor Airborne Spore Levels Before and

Full conference title: 

American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology
    • AAAAI 2012 (68th)