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Spray Cleaners May Up Asthma Risk

Study Sees Asthma Link for Home Users of Chemical Cleaning Sprays

No Proof of Cause and Effect continued...

But a spokesman for a trade group representing manufacturers of commercial cleaning products says population studies like that of Zock and colleagues often suggest cause and effect relationships that don't exist.

"By its very nature, the cleaning process brings people into contact with known asthma causes and triggers, i.e. the biological contaminants (mold, insect parts and excrement, animal dander, etc.)," Bill Lafield of the Consumer Specialty Products Association tells WebMD. "Higher exposure to these contaminants could result in higher than normal occurrences of asthma."

Zock says people can minimize potential risks by using non-aerosolized cleaning products, by limiting their use of products containing bleach and ammonia, and by never mixing cleaners that contain the two chemicals.

In his editorial, Rosenman called on federal regulators to test the chemicals used in cleaning products for their potential to cause asthma.

The lack of such oversight has led to at least one recall of a carpet powder and spray specifically marketed to people with asthma, according to Rosenman.

"It turned out that this product caused asthma," he says.

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