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Air allergens prompt asthma alert

23 September 2011 09:30

High pollen levels which cause hay fever may intensify asthma symptoms

High pollen levels which cause hay fever may intensify asthma symptoms

Britons with asthma travelling to Pittsburgh may want to arrange some medical travel insurance first, with studies showing high levels of airborne allergens and mould spores around the US city.

According to researchers at the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology the recent spell of hot weather has resulted in strong growth of pollen-producing ragweed in the region.

Combined with rains - which increased humidity and with it the fungal spore concentration in air - the weather has brought difficulties for people with allergies and asthma.

Doctors say the ragweed season has caused a rise in the number of patients coming in with hay fever, which manifests itself in swollen eyes and runny noses. Mould allergies are also more common around this time of the year.

Weather changes at the end of summer are particularly difficult for people who already have inflammatory and respiratory problems, health experts say.

Travellers who have any of the medical conditions should take adequate precautions before jetting off to Pittsburgh.