Occupational asthma in poultry workers

J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1984 Feb;73(2):271-5. doi: 10.1016/s0091-6749(84)80019-6.


Sixteen poultry workers with poultry house--related rhinitis and/or asthma underwent clinical and laboratory evaluation that included history and physical examination, skin tests with common inhalant and PAg, total- and specific-IgE levels, and pulmonary-function studies. Sixteen age- and sex-matched atopic subjects who were not occupationally exposed to poultry and 12 asymptomatic veterinarians with occupational exposure to poultry served as controls. Rhinitis and asthma developed only in symptomatic poultry workers after exposure to poultry; only in these individuals could immediate wheal-and-flare reactions to poultry antigens be detected (p less than 0.001). The elapsed time between the initial poultry exposure and the onset of poultry house--related symptoms averaged 10 yr. In the symptomatic poultry workers, immediate skin test reactivity and RAST reactions were most frequently associated with NFM. The association between respiratory symptoms temporally related to poultry house exposure and the demonstrable IgE antibody-mediated reaction suggests a relationship between the two.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Antibodies / immunology
  • Antibody Specificity
  • Asthma / immunology*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypersensitivity, Immediate / immunology
  • Immunoglobulin E / immunology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mites / immunology
  • Occupational Diseases / immunology*
  • Poultry
  • Radioimmunoassay
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Skin Tests
  • Time Factors
  • Tissue Extracts


  • Antibodies
  • Tissue Extracts
  • Immunoglobulin E