Occupational Asthma Reference

Cartier A, Bernstein IL, Burge PS, Cohn JR, Fabbri LM, Hargreave FE, Malo JL, McKay RT, Salvaggio JE, Guidelines for bronchoprovocation on the investigation of occupational asthma. Report of the Subcommittee on Bronchoprovocation for Occupational Asthma, J Allergy Clin Immunol, 1989;84:823-829,

Keywords: guidelines, asthma, ch, methods, oa

Known Authors

André Cartier, Hôpital de Sacré Coeur, Montreal, Quebec, Canada André Cartier

Sherwood Burge, Oasys Sherwood Burge

Leo Fabbri, University of Moderna and Reggio Emilia Leo Fabbri

Jean-Luc Malo, Hôpital de Sacré Coeur, Montreal, Quebec, Canada Jean-Luc Malo

Leonard Bernstein, Cincinatti Leonard Bernstein

Freddy Hargreave, McMaster University, Hamilton Freddy Hargreave

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Abstract

Asthma can be induced or exacerbated at work by several means. Four work-related disorders, characterized by airflow obstruction and airway hyperresponsiveness, have been described. These include occupational asthma, byssinosis, the reactive airways dysfunction syndrome, and variable airflow obstruction caused by irritant substances. This committee has elected to focus only on the topic of occupational asthma, which is defined as asthma that is either induced or exacerbated by exposure to a specific (as opposed to an irritant) agent found at work.

The Committee has decided to exclude discussion of other causes of asthmatic exacerbations at work, which does not mean that these conditions are not important. It may also, as discussed in other sections of this report, be quite difficult to distinguish an irritant effect from a specific bronchospastic response.

A preexisting history of asthma before exposure to the offending agent does not preclude the diagnosis of occupational asthma.

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