For over 35 years black mold broke her body down day by day.
Through her childhood, Dana Anhalt grew sicker and sicker and at 37 she almost lost the ability to walk or use her hands. Sometimes the artist from New York weighed as little as 32kg.
"I became ravaged by excruciating pain" Anhalt wrote on her GoFundMe page. My Symptom list stretched to four pages long and I started to fade fast as every system of my body broke down.
Doctors finally diagnosed her with Common Variable Immunodeficiency (CVID), Lyme Disease, Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome and Mast Cell Activation Syndrome. This all after discovering a very important piece of the puzzle. Anhalt had been living in a home infested with black mould or Stachybotrys chartarum.
Stachybotrys chartarum is a toxic mould that is associated with leaking buildings in New Zealand in recent years. The mould is caused by leaks that originate outside the building and from leaks within wet areas in buildings. Stachybotrys is a greenish-black mould that grows on materials that contain cellulose such as wood fibreboard, fibre-cement, the paper lining of GIB board, craft paper and roof underlays, wallpaper and timber, when the material is subject to wetting.
In Anhalt's case the fungal growth had set off a terrible reaction as her body was unable to to identify the foreign substances causing severe inflammation and pain.
Claims of health problems related to this mould have been documented in humans and animals since the 1930's. More recently, S. chartarum has been linked with so-called sick building Syndrome.
In 1994 the US Center for Disease Control verified that a number of infants in Cleveland, Ohio became sick and some died from pulmonary hemosiderosis (bleeding in the lungs) following exposure to unusually high levels of S. chartarum spores.
In 2007 the journal Veterinary Forum published an article reporting that two cats had died under anesthesia in what is believed to be the first documented case of black mold poisoning in pets. The cats had been living in Florida in a water damaged home. During routine dental procedures both cats experienced severe pulmonary hemorrhage and later died. Blood tests confirmed the presence of a toxin produced by S. chartarum, and severe mould contamination was found in the home.
The most common response to black mould is allergic rhinitis but some can develop asthma from prolonged exposure and for those who already have respiratory illness or immunological diseases the results can be much worse with serious consequences like lung infections.
The good news is that remediation is possible, the mould can be removed making your home or office a healthy environment once again. However precautions must be taken during this time as the dry dead mould is when black mold becomes the most dangerous. Normally the mould spores are covered with a protective slime and once dry the spores become airborne, this is when the spores can be introduced to your lungs.
Fortunately mould spores are relatively large particles at 10 micron (µm) which means they can be successfully filtered out of the air in your home or office, but not all filtration systems are created equal. IQAir is the only air purification unit on the market to date that offers a Total System Efficency (TSE) of ≥ 99.97% for particles ≥ 0.3 microns (µm). This means you can breathe easy knowing that all of the mold spores are captured by the filters.
The HealthPro series of air purifiers are the perfect tool to take control of the air you breathe at home, in the office and in your classroom with hospital grade HEPA filters. Filtercorp Health offers two models, the HealthPro 100 and the HealthPro 250, both offer the TSE of ≥ 99.97% for particles ≥ 0.3 microns (µm) and are able to change the air in an 85m2