Dead Leaves and Mold Allergies: New Study

Dead leaves can cause mold allergies


This fall on the east coast has been a classic mold season. We’ve had unusual amounts of warm weather, mixed with heavy rains. If you see the beautiful colored leaves that have fallen to the ground, you can be sure lots of mold is spewing off those dead leaves. Mold allergy season typically starts in the hot, humid summer when mold grows on the patches of brown grass, then continues into the fall. This outdoor mold can cause respiratory problems like allergic sinusitis andasthma. Some patient’s eczema rashes get worse around this time as well. Indoor mold can be a problem anytime of the year, wherever there is water damage in a home. I recommend dehumidifiers to decrease the water content in the home.

Recent research

In this month’s issue of the Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, a great team of researchers showed that sublingual allergy immunotherapy (allergy drops) were effective compared to placebo in reversing the effects of a specific mold, Alternaria, in patients with rhinitis (nasal), eye and chest symptoms. The doctors, Canonica and Passalacqua, are both world leaders in sublingual research. Dr. Canonica was kind enough to endorse my book, Dr. Dean Mitchell’s Allergy and Asthma Solution, back in 2006, when I was trying to educate the public on the benefit of the sublingual method- which had been around in Europe for over 20 years.

girl-laying-on-leavesWhen will it end?

I have been seeing a lot of patients the past 2 months who have been complaining of sinus and chest symptoms. They thought the pollen season was over. It was, but the mold season just kept on going. Usually, once the ground frosts over, mold dies off and the symptoms subside. I’ve been treating patients with this type of mold allergy with sublingual allergy drops in my Long Island practice for over a decade. In this particular area, we are surrounded by water and can get especially high mold spore counts from June through November.

The good news is that winter is around the corner. Less allergies, more time to celebrate the Holidays.

Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Dr. Dean Mitchell
Mitchell Medical Group, NYC & Long Island

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