4th Edition

Asthma in the Workplace

ISBN 9780367576448
Published June 29, 2020 by CRC Press
454 Pages

USD $69.95

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Book Description

Occupational factors are responsible for a large percentage of cases of asthma in adults of working age. Any irritant generated at high concentrations can cause occupational asthma, and early diagnosis is critical because cure is still possible at this stage. This latest edition of Asthma in the Workplace reflects the rapid pace of discovery and research in workplace asthma that has taken place in recent years.

This Fourth Edition retains the international flavor of prior editions, with contributions from editors and contributors from around the world. Several chapters commence with clinical histories and workplace scenarios relevant to the focus of the chapter, making it particularly germane for primary care providers to develop skills in early recognition of the disease.

Topics discussed include:

  • Definitions, historical background, epidemiology, genetics, pathophysiology, and animal models

  • Guidelines for assessing the worker and the workplace, and proposed guidelines for management, including compensation aspects

  • Medicolegal aspects, prevention, and surveillance

  • Detailed information about specific agents, including a variety of high- and low-molecular weight agents

  • Other types of work-related asthma conditions, such as irritant-induced asthma, eosinophilic bronchitis, and occupational rhinitis


This new edition has been significantly restructured and places a greater emphasis on the clinical aspects of management and treatment. This heightened focus on practical considerations makes it a truly comprehensive, hands-on resource for practitioners and researchers in this fast-moving field.

Table of Contents

Introduction. Definition and classification of asthma in the workplace. Historical aspects. Disease occurrence and risk factors. Mechanisms, genetics, and pathophysiology. Animal models. Assessment. Assessment of the worker. Assessment of the workplace. Immunological and inflammatory assessments. Functional assessment. Management. Management of the worker. Protecting the worker and modifying the work environment. Prevention and surveillance. Impairment and disability evaluations: I. Psychosocial, economic, and medicolegal aspects. Impairment and disability evaluation: II. Various legislations. Specific Agents Causing Immunological Occupational Asthma. High- and low-molecular weight agents. Enzymes. Occupational asthma in the baking industry. Asthma and allergy to animals. Polyisocyanates and their prepolymers. Western red cedar and other wood dusts. Metals. Specific Disease Entities and Variants. Irritant-induced asthma and reactive airways dysfunction syndrome. Asthma exacerbated at work. Eosinophilic bronchitis. Occupational rhinitis. Airway diseases due to organic dust exposure. Chronic obstructive airway disease due to occupational exposure. Hypersensitivity pneumonitis and organic dust toxic syndrome. Building-related illnesses and mold-related conditions. Occupational urticaria and allergic contact dermatitis. Index.

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Jean-Luc Malo, M.D. is Professor of Respiratory Medicine and former Vice-Dean at the Faculty of Medicine of Université de Montréal. He practices as a chest physician at Sacré-Coeur Hospital in Montreal. During his career, he has been principally involved in the improvement of diagnostic means of occupational asthma and has identified many causal agents. He has described the outcome after cessation of exposure in the case of immunological and non-immunological occupational asthma and participated in epidemiological studies of apprentices and workers. Dr. Malo has contributed to international research projects, position papers and guidelines in the field of asthma in the workplace.

Moira Chan-Yeung, MB, FRCPC is Emeritus Professor, Department of Medicine, at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, in Canada. She is the recipient of the Alice Hamilton Award for Major and Lasting Contribution in Occupational Health from the American Industrial Hygiene Association and the prestigious Distinguished Achievement award from the American Thoracic Society, among other honours. One of her many noteworthy contributions is her discovery of plicatic acid as the agent responsible for Western Red Cedar asthma. Since Dr. Chan-Yeung began her research in the Department of Medicine in 1968, she has published over 370 peer-reviewed articles and 5 books and has a research laboratory dedicated to her work in UBC.

David I Bernstein, M.D. is Professor of Medicine and Environmental Health at the University of Cincinnati Division of Immunology, Allergy, and Rheumatology. He has been Director or Co-Director of the Allergy Immunology fellowship training program at the University of Cincinnati for 30 years. During his career, he has focused his research efforts on the investigation of occupational asthma and environmental causes of allergic disorders in childhood. Dr. Bernstein has contributed to developing methods for immunologic evaluation of occupational asthma, and more recently, to better understanding genetic determinants of occupational asthma. He has authored or co-authored 157 articles in peer-reviewed journals as well numerous reviews and book chapters.