Asthma caused by inhalation of powdered chicken's egg


Occupations
  • Baker, Cook
  • Food industry
  • Pastry cook
 
Agents
Eggs, Ovalbumine, Vitellus, Yolk.
 
Incidence
Incidence: low as few people are involved in this precise type of work.
 
Subjects are not always atopic.
 
IgE-dependent mechanism. Specific forms of IgE have been demonstrated to be present at significant levels, in particular for ovomucoid and ovalbumin.
 
Conditions
Spraying and brushing of foodstuffs with solutions containing egg yolk. Manufacture of egg powder.
 
An American study performed in bakers and confectioners and published in 2001 demonstrated that it is possible to measure protein levels (ovalbumin, the ovomucoid fraction and lysozyme) in the workplace. The highest levels were found in those parts of the factory where the eggs are broken (breaking room).
 
Symptoms
Asthma, cough and breathing difficulties, initially occurring at the start and at the end of the working day. Risk of anaphylactic reactions occurring after ingestion of egg products , similarly after occupational exposure, an “egg-egg” syndrome may be observed...
 
Diagnostic methods
 Skin prick test with whole egg or its constituents (unreliable).
 
Immunological dosage: RAST/CAP RAST.
 
Bronchial provocation test (in Hospital) and monitoring bronchial flow rates during work.

References

  1. J. Investig. Allergol. Clin. Immunol. 2001,11:89 - Leser C. et al.
  2. Appl. Occup. Environ. Hyg. 2001,16:660 - Boeninger MF et al.
  3. Jap. J. Allergol. 1972,21:665
  4. Ann. Intern. Med. 1973,78:888
  5. MMWR 1987,36:23
  6. J. Allergy Clin. Immunol. 1987,80:791
  7. J. Allergy Clin. Immunol. 1982,69:55
  8. Jama 1987,20:257
  9. Am. J. Ind. Med. 1987,12:205
  10. Chest 1985,88:740
  11. Clin. Allergy 1983,13:427

As in all diagnostic testing, the diagnosis is made by the physican based on both test results and the patient history.