The sick building syndrome

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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  • Ronald A. Ruhl
  • Christopher C. Chang
  • Georges M. Halpern
  • M. Eric Gershwin


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)297-308
Journal / PublicationJournal of Asthma
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes


Indoor air pollution is closely associated with health problems and exacerbation of asthmatic symptoms. However, it is difficult to find objective data regarding the nature of these illnesses and the degree of exposure necessary to elicit symptoms in building occupants. Clinicians must be encouraged to take seriously, and without bias, workers' complaints about their work environment. However, this is often a problem because of subjective complaints, potential malingerers, mass hysteria, and lack of impartial clinical and laboratory findings. Clearly, in any building, a major priority must be to provide and maintain an environment conducive to occupant health and well-being. Allowable levels of air pollutants must be scientifically determined by health investigators based on government regulations. Unfortunately, regulations are often ill defined, unenforceable, and burdened by a void as to who is responsible for achieving a healthful indoor environment. The elucidation of the multiple causes of illnesses secondary to indoor air pollution can be addressed by greater attention to design, construction, and operation of buildings where people live and work. Finally and most important, the federal government should bear the responsibility for funding the necessary research to solve the nation's indoor air quality problems. © 1993 Informa UK Ltd All rights reserved: reproduction in whole or part not permitted.

Citation Format(s)

The sick building syndrome. / Ruhl, Ronald A.; Chang, Christopher C.; Halpern, Georges M. et al.
In: Journal of Asthma, Vol. 30, No. 4, 1993, p. 297-308.

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review