There are approximately 400,000 types of mold, of which less than 100,000 have been named.
Approximately 1,000 types of mold are found indoors acoss America. Less than 80 molds are
suspected of causing some form of illness, and only a few of them are considered toxic.
Descriptions from the Glossary below are included in your test results.
THREE MAJOR MOLD GROUPS:
Molds are organized into three groups according to
human responses: Allergenic, Pathogenic and Toxigenic.
Allergenic molds do not usually produce life-threatening health effects and are most likely to
affect those who are already allergic or asthmatic. The human system responses to allergenic
molds tend to be relatively mild, depending on individual sensitivities, typically producing
scratchy throats, eye and nose irritations and rashes.
Pathogenic molds usually produce some type of infection. They can cause serious health effects
in persons with suppressed immune systems. Healthy people can usually resist infection by these
organisms regardless of dose. In some cases, high exposure may cause hypersensitivity
pneumonitis (an acute response to exposure to an organism).
Mycotoxins can cause serious health effects in almost anybody. These agents have toxic effects
ranging from short-term irritation to immunosuppression and possibly cancer. Therefore, when
toxigenic molds are found further evaluation is recommended.
COMMON INDOOR MOLDS
The most common types of mold found indoors include:
Aspergillus and its subspecies (A. flavus, A. versicolor);
Stachybotrys atra (S. atra), also known as "Black Mold."
Often, mold spores, whether dead or alive, cause adverse health effects, primarily of a respiratory
nature, including hay fever-like allergic symptoms.
Many of these molds, primarily S. atra, also produce chemical toxins known as "mycotoxins,"
which are generated and released into the air within the mold spores, leading to the "toxic mold"
designation. Exposure to these toxins can occur through inhalation, ingestion, or skin contact,
and can result in symptoms including dermatitis, cough, rhinitis, nose bleeds, cold and flu
symptoms, headache, general malaise and fever.
Green Sand Mold