Background and objective: We investigated if the colonisation of new mattresses with house dust mites, bacteria, and fungi could be reduced by using synthetic mattress covers as compared to common cotton covers.
Patients/methods: 84 healthy volunteers were assigned to two groups. Group A (n = 43) received the cotton covers, group B (n = 41) the synthetic covers which were made of a polyester microfaser with a polyurethane surface layer (Pro-Tex, Germed, Schwarzenbek, Germany).
Results: The mite antigen concentration after six months was significantly lower in group B. Three months after the start of the study counts of bacteria and moulds were significantly higher in group A compared to group B.
Conclusions: It can be recommended that patients suffering from an allergy to mites or moulds may reduce their domestic allergen exposure by using the synthetic mattress covers tested in this study. Since cotton covers are very likely to become colonised by bacteria and moulds, they must be cleaned periodically (at least every 2nd-3d month).