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Indoor air quality and personal factors related to the sick building syndrome.

Norback D, Michel I, Widstrom J, 1990
IAQ | sick building syndrome
Bibliographic info: Scand J Work Environ Health, Vol 16, 1990, pp 121-128, 1 fig, 8 tabs, 34 refs.
Languages: English

As is well known, SBS involves symptoms such as eye, skin and upper airway irritation, headache, and fatigue. A multifactorial study was made among workers in consecutive cases of sick buildings to investigate the links between these symptoms, exposure to environmental factors, and personal factors. The total indoor hydrocarbon concentration had a significant correlation to the symptoms but other indoor exposures such as room temperature, air humidity, and formaldehyde or carbon dioxide concentration did not. Personal factors such as reported hyperreactivity and sick leave due to respiratory diseases were closely related to SBS. Other factors associated with SBS were smoking, psychosocial factors, and reports of static electricity by workers. Neither atopy (the genetic tendency to develop the "classical" allergic diseases), age, sex, nor outdoor exposures had a significant correlation with the number of symptoms. The study concludes that SBS is caused by several factors including indoor hydrocarbon exposure and individual factors.


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