The presence of mold spores in your home, school, or workplace environments can lead to mild or severe symptoms when you inhale them. You may develop a condition called aspergillosis for some mold types. Treatment of mold exposure is fairly straightforward in the early stages. It is best to receive treatment promptly.
Aspergillosis is an allergic reaction or infection that has various sorts of mold as its source. The most prevalent cause of aspergillosis is aspergillus fumigatus, which creates symptoms when you inhale its spores. Most people with healthy immune systems will not encounter problems. If you have chronic lung problems, however, or a weak immune system, you may be susceptible. Three types of aspergillosis occur:
- Pulmonary aspergillosis generally afflicts those with damaged lungs or lung disorders.
- Invasive aspergillosis, which is the most severe, starts when the infection has traveled from the lungs and on into the bloodstream, where it may impact other organs like the liver, kidneys, brain, or skin. It can be lethal.
- Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis, or ABPA, is the allergic reaction occurring in some once they have been exposed to Aspergillus fungus.
Symptoms of Exposure to Mold
You may experience symptoms of having been exposed to mold if you are sensitive to it or have an actual allergy to it. These symptoms include:
- Nose stuffiness
- Itchy or red eyes
- Sore throat
- Skin rash
The symptoms of aspergillosis may be more severe if it has continued through advanced stages. They include:
- Coughing, with a potential for mucus or blood
- Chest pain
- Difficulty breathing
- Liver or kidney failure
- Massive bleeding that originates in the lungs
Treating Mold-Induced Symptoms
If you suffer from the symptoms related to mold exposure, one option is to use a solution of saline and warm, distilled water. Use this to rinse clear your nasal passages, getting rid of mold spores while you remove congestion. Over the counter antihistamines can reduce the reactions of your immune system’s response, minimizing the inflammation of your airway. Decongestants keep down swelling. Stronger solutions for mold exposure symptoms are those in common with treating mold allergies.
Treating a Mold Allergy
When a doctor has diagnosed you with a systemic fungal infection, particularly if you possess a weakened immune system, there are several options for treatment. The first is, of course, avoiding the allergen if you can, as much as you can. Otherwise, you can try a nasal rinse to flush out mold spores. Another choice is the use of antihistamines to halt your runny nose, itchiness, and sneezing. Decongestant nasal sprays may be prescribed. Your doctor may also suggest a nasal corticosteroid for the reduction of inflammation. Finally, oral decongestants are used to reduce your congestion. These treatments are like treatments for various other inhaled types of allergies. A long-term solution might involve immunotherapy, during which you would receive a series of shots for allergies over the course of a few years.
One option to treat this condition is the use of oral corticosteroid drugs. These medications may be solid or liquid in form. They are prescribed for the treatment of allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis. By reducing inflammation and preventing respiratory symptoms like coughing and wheezing, these oral corticosteroid drugs prevent symptoms from worsening. The second route to take for the treatment of aspergillosis is a prescription for antifungal drugs. Such medications generally are in use for the treatment of invasive pulmonary aspergillosis. Antifungal drugs may be used along with a prescription for oral corticosteroids in the treatment of ABPA. It is important to note that antifungals have been known to cause particularly serious side effects. These include damage to the kidneys or liver. Surgery is the final option for sufferers of aspergillosis. It may be required in such cases as when the presence of aspergillomas is there and causing serious problems. Such antifungal medications generally fail to be particularly effective against aspergillomas.
Thus, surgery is often advised. Embolization is a potential choice to block the flow of the blood to the artery that supplies the cavity in the lung where the ball of fungus waits. This stops bleeding, but that may occur again at a later time. Treatments for mold exposure are easiest and most effective in the early stages. If you suspect you have been inhaling mold spores and are reacting to them, consult your doctor and seek out potential causes so you can eliminate them. While basic mold allergies can be annoying, severe aspergillosis can be deadly. Contact us at 205-352-9141.