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Black Mold (Stachybotrys Chartarum) Allergy Test

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About Our Black Mold (Stachybotrys Chartarum) Allergy Test

Note: Fasting is not required for this test.

This IgE antibody allergy test uses a blood sample to determine if you are allergic to the mold Stachybotrys chartarum (Stachybotrys atra), or black mold.

Stachybotrys chartarum (or Stachybotrys atra), also known as black mold, is a dark green or black microfungus. Black mold can be found on fiberboard, drywall, paper, dust, and lint, and it grows when there are ample heat and moisture, often from water damage or excessive humidity.1 The mycotoxins found in Stachybotrys chartarum cause it to be harmful to both humans and pets.

What is Mold and Where Do You Find It?

Mold is, technically, a non-scientific term for many types of unwanted or non-useful fungi that are found both indoors and out. Mold is considered unwanted because of the negative health effects it has on humans when inhaled, and because it damages the material it grows on.2 It’s dangerous to humans because of the toxic chemicals found inside molds known as mycotoxins. Fortunately, only a few dozen types of mold can cause allergic reactions, including Stachybotrys chartarum.3 

The “seeds” of mold, known as spores for fungi, are spread by the wind, fog, and dew, along with other small fungus fragments. You can find mold and mold spores everywhere; it’s almost impossible to escape. Most molds are not harmful, but it’s important to know where the harmful types grow. Active mold requires moisture to develop and flourishes in hot, wet conditions. The introduction of water from flooding, roof leaks, or plumbing damage can quickly introduce mold into a home or building. 

What are the Symptoms of Black Mold?

You do not need to be allergic to mold to be affected by it, but those who are allergic, have asthma, or other respiratory diseases may be more sensitive to it and experience symptoms of greater intensity.4 

The symptoms of a Stachybotrys chartarum allergy include:5

  • Stuffy or runny nose
  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Red or itchy eyes, or skin
  • Irritated throat
  • Upper respiratory tract symptoms 
  • Asthmatic symptoms 
  • Fever
  • Shortness of breath
  • Claimed cases of pulmonary hemosiderosis (bleeding of the lungs) in some infants6

How Common is Black Mold?

Black mold is somewhat uncommon in nature, and almost never grows to the scale it can in manmade structures. Stachybotrys chartarum thrives in areas such as in houses, offices, schools, and other buildings. These environments can promote the growth of black mold because they contain many cellulose-rich building materials and can experience little sunlight, large temperature fluctuations, high and consistent humidity, and low nitrogen with no competing molds.7 


HealthLabs.com offers an easier, virtually pain-free blood test to determine the allergen status of substances without the irritation of traditional skin prick tests.

- Tests are administered at any of our 4,500+ nationwide locations

- Typical time to administer the test is 10-15 minutes

- Accurate results within 1 to 3 days

References

  1. Stachybotrys chartarum: The Toxic Indoor Mold. The American Phytopathological Society (APS). https://www.apsnet.org/edcenter/apsnetfeatures/Pages/Stachybotrys.aspx
  2. Mold 101: Effects on Human Health. National Capital Poison Center. https://www.poison.org/articles/2011-oct/mold-101-effects-on-human-health
  3. Mold Allergy. Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. https://www.aafa.org/mold-allergy/
  4. Mold. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. https://www.niehs.nih.gov/health/topics/agents/mold/index.cfm
  5. Stachybotrys Chartarum Definition. American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. https://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/conditions-dictionary/stachybotrys-chartarum
  6.  Mold.  Organization of Teratology Information Specialists. https://mothertobaby.org/fact-sheets/mold-pregnancy/ 
  7. Facts about Stachybotrys chartarum and Other Molds. Centers for Disease Control and Management. https://www.cdc.gov/mold/stachy.htm
Medically Reviewed by: 2019-11-13

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