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September 21, 1935

WHEAT HAIRS AND DUST AS A COMMON CAUSE OF ASTHMA AMONG WORKERS IN WHEAT FLOUR MILLS

JAMA. 1935;105(12):957-958. doi:10.1001/jama.1935.92760380001010

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Abstract

In the study of four consecutive cases of asthma observed among workers in wheat flour mills, I have been able to trace the source of illness, I believe, to sensitization to wheat hairs or the surface scales of wheat, or both. I believe that wheat hair is probably the morphologic structure which is responsible for a majority of cases of wheat asthma among millers.

The four patients all gave a like history of finding that they were subject to asthma while working in wheat mills, especially on windy days and when they worked in certain rooms in which they were exposed to the dust that came from the first cleaning of the wheat grain.The most severe attacks followed mishaps in the machinery of the mill or the cleaning of apparatus or rooms that exposed the workers to unusually large amounts of this dust. Depending on the degree and duration of exposure,

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