Interior surface materials and asthma in adults: a population-based incident case-control study

Am J Epidemiol. 2006 Oct 15;164(8):742-9. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwj249. Epub 2006 Jul 28.


The authors conducted a population-based incident case-control study to assess the relations between different types of interior surface materials and recent renovations at home and at work and the risk of asthma in adults. The authors systematically recruited all new cases of asthma during a 2.5-year study period (1997-2000) and randomly selected controls from a source population consisting of adults 21-63 years of age living in south Finland. The clinically diagnosed cases consisted of 521 adults with new asthma, and the controls consisted of 932 adults fulfilling eligibility criteria. In logistic regression analysis adjusting for confounding, the risk of asthma was related to the presence of plastic wall materials (adjusted odds ratio (OR) = 2.43, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.03, 5.75) and wall-to-wall carpet at work (adjusted OR = 1.73, 95% CI: 0.74, 4.09), the latter in particular in the presence of mold problems (adjusted OR = 4.64, 95% CI: 1.11, 19.4). Use of floor-leveling plaster at home during the past 12 months was also a determinant of onset of asthma (adjusted OR = 1.81, 95% CI: 1.06, 3.08). These findings underline the need to consider the health aspects of materials used in floor, wall, and other indoor surfaces.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Air Pollution, Indoor / adverse effects*
  • Asthma / epidemiology*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Confounding Factors, Epidemiologic
  • Construction Materials / adverse effects*
  • Environmental Exposure*
  • Female
  • Finland / epidemiology
  • Housing*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Interior Design and Furnishings*
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Workplace*