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Title: A case report of occupational asthma due to gluteraldehyde exposure
Authors: Ong, TH 
Tan, KL 
Lee, HS 
Eng, P 
Keywords: Diagnosis
Specific inhalational challenge
Issue Date: Mar-2004
Citation: Ong, TH, Tan, KL, Lee, HS, Eng, P (2004-03). A case report of occupational asthma due to gluteraldehyde exposure. ANNALS ACADEMY OF MEDICINE SINGAPORE 33 (2) : 275-278. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Introduction: We report the first case of occupational asthma due to gluteraldehyde exposure in Singapore and also describe the use of a specific inhalational challenge (SIC) test in confirming the diagnosis. Clinical Picture: A 32-year-old laboratory technician presented with adult-onset asthma 2 years after daily exposure to gluteraldehyde which was used to sterilise the mouthpieces used for lung function testing. SIC testing showed a 25% drop in FEV1 after exposure to gluteraldehyde but not after exposure to a control, thus confirming the diagnosis. Treatment: Alternative arrangements were made for sterilisation of the mouthpieces so that gluteraldehyde could be removed from the workplace. There was a marked improvement in her asthmatic control thereafter. Conclusions: This case illustrates the use of a SIC test in the diagnosis of occupational asthma. Gluteraldehyde is a known cause of occupational asthma and should be kept in mind when evaluating asthmatic patients in at-risk occupations. Effective ventilation and proper storage should be ensured to minimise exposure to gluteraldehyde where its use is necessary.
ISSN: 03044602
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