Respiratory morbidity among children following renovation of a water-damaged school

Arch Environ Health. Nov-Dec 2000;55(6):405-10. doi: 10.1080/00039890009604038.


The authors sought to determine whether exposure to molds, resulting from moisture damage in a school, was associated with increased respiratory symptoms and morbidity among schoolchildren and whether the renovation of this building resulted in a decrease in prevalence of respiratory symptoms and morbidity. The study was a follow-up (1-y interval) of children between the ages of 7 and 12 y from two elementary schools in a Finnish suburb. In addition to a questionnaire completed by the parents, the authors assessed the respiratory health of children by examining the health records of a local health center. In the cross-sectional study, the prevalence of symptoms and infections were higher in the exposed group, as were visits to a physician and use of antibiotics. The school was renovated, after which all prevalence decreased and no significant differences remained, except for visits to a physician (according to questionnaire responses). Therefore, moisture damage and exposure to molds increased the indoor air problems of schools and affected the respiratory health of children.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Confidence Intervals
  • Environmental Monitoring / methods
  • Environmental Pollutants / adverse effects*
  • Epidemiological Monitoring
  • Facility Design and Construction
  • Female
  • Fungi / isolation & purification
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Odds Ratio
  • Reference Values
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / diagnosis
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / epidemiology*
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / etiology*
  • Risk Factors
  • Schools
  • Sick Building Syndrome / diagnosis
  • Sick Building Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Sick Building Syndrome / etiology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


  • Environmental Pollutants