Skip navigation
† C.The Health Effects Linked to Damp Buildings

Narrator: What are the health effects linked to dampness and mold? This is Science Today. Bill Fisk, head of the Indoor Environment Department at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, says the clear symptoms are exacerbation of asthma in those who already have the ailment, as well as other respiratory health symptoms.

Fisk: Like cough, wheeze, nasal symptoms in ordinary individuals and when dampness problems or visible mold are present in buildings, the prevalence of these outcomes Ė the fraction of people who have them that live in buildings with these dampness and mold increases substantially, for example by fifty percent.

Narrator: Fisk was part of a national committee reviewing all the scientific literature on dampness and mold growth in buildings.

Fisk: Thereís also evidence of some other health effects associated with dampness and mold, like the development of asthma as a disease, rather than the causing of symptoms in individuals, which is quite a serious outcome, but we decided the evidence isnít conclusive there.

Narrator: For Science Today, Iím Larissa Branin.