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Asthma

Smoke on Clothing and Asthma

01/11/2005

Question:

Can smoke residual on an employee clothes trigger a hyperactive airway condition?

Answer:

The smooth muscle surrounding the airways are sensitive or 'twitchy' in people with asthma . Exposure to various stimuli or 'triggers' may cause the airway muscles to contract and thereby produce asthma symptoms. The triggers that provoke asthma are numerous but vary among individuals. Environmental tobacco smoke and strong odors are potential triggers, so it may be possible for the odor of cigarette smoke in clothes to trigger asthma symptoms. 

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Response by:

Dennis   McGraw, MD Dennis McGraw, MD
Assistant Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati