Article of Interest: EPA Ups Formaldehyde Warning

Formaldehyde vocs indoor air quality

Our team at the Hoffman Toxicant-Induced Loss of Tolerance (TILT) Program at UT Health San Antonio wanted to share this important external article:

EPA ups formaldehyde warning” by Science.

A long-delayed assessment of the health effects of formaldehyde has concluded that the widely used chemical poses a greater cancer risk than had been estimated, which could lead to greater regulation. Most people are exposed to formaldehyde in airborne emissions from the glue in treated plywood and particle board used in buildings.
A draft assessment 12 years ago by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that linked formaldehyde exposure to an increased risk of leukemia and other cancers drew objections from members of Congress and industry representatives, who maintain that products containing formaldehyde are safe.

Formaldehyde is a common indoor air pollutant.

Sources of formaldehyde in the home include building materials, smoking, household products, and the use of un-vented, fuel-burning appliances, like gas stoves or kerosene space heater, according to the EPA.

Indoor air quality in schools is an important issue for people who experience chemical intolerance, said Dr. Claudia Miller, allergist/immunologist, professor emeritus, and leader of the Hoffman TILT Program at UT Health San Antonio.

How chemically sensitive are you?

Answer these three questions from the Brief Environmental Exposure and Sensitivity Inventory (BREESI):

  1. Do you feel sick when you are exposed to tobacco smoke, certain fragrances, nail polish/remover, engine exhaust, gasoline, air fresheners, pesticides, paint/thinner, fresh tar/asphalt, cleaning supplies, new carpet or furnishings? By sick, we mean: headache, difficulty thinking, difficulty breathing, weakness, dizziness, upset stomach, etc.
  2. Are you unable to tolerate or do you have adverse or allergic reactions to any drugs or medications (such as antibiotics, anesthetics, pain relievers, X-ray contrast dye, vaccines or birth control pills), or to an implant, prosthesis, contraceptive chemical or device, or other medical/surgical/dental material or procedure?
  3. Are you unable to tolerate or do you have adverse reactions to any foods such as dairy products, wheat, corn, eggs, caffeine, alcoholic beverages, or food additives (e.g., MSG, food dye)?

\If you answer YES to any of these three questions, take the Quick Environmental Exposure and Sensitivity Inventory (QEESI) and share the results with your doctor!

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