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Home Spray Cleaners Could Raise Asthma Risk
Date:10/12/2007

Spritzing just once a week boosted odds by 50%, study found,,

FRIDAY, Oct. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Using household cleaning sprays and spray air fresheners just once a week can increase your risk of developing asthma, new research suggests.

Whether or not the cleaning products are a direct cause of asthma, or simply a trigger for people who already have the disease, isn't clear from this epidemiological study.

However, the European team involved in the study believes that spray cleaners can be a cause of new-onset asthma, because the people included in this study did not have asthma or asthma symptoms at the start of the study.

The use of spray cleaners as little as once a week increased the risk of developing the respiratory ailment by nearly 50 percent, the researchers found.

"Cleaning sprays, especially air fresheners, furniture cleaners and glass cleaners, had a particularly strong effect. The risk of developing asthma increased with the frequency of cleaning and number of different sprays used, but on average was 30 to 50 percent higher in people regularly exposed to cleaning sprays than in others," said the study's lead author, Jan-Paul Zock, a research fellow at the Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology at the Municipal Institute of Medical Research in Barcelona, Spain.

Results of the study were expected to be published in the second October issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

The most important thing consumers need to know, cautioned Zock, is that "cleaning sprays -- for sale in all supermarkets -- are not harmless, and their use may involve serious health risks."

Previous research has found an association between asthma and being employed as a professional cleaner. Other studies have also noted a link between respiratory symptoms and certain cleaning products, but Zock and his colleagues wanted to learn if ty
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