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- Kenyon, N.J., Morrissey, B.M., Schivo, M. et al. Clinic Rev Allerg Immunol (2012) 43: 3. doi:10.1007/s12016-011-8272-0
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Occupational asthma is the most common occupational lung disease. Work-aggravated asthma and occupational asthma are two forms of asthma causally related to the workplace, while reactive airways dysfunction syndrome is a separate entity and a subtype of occupational asthma. The diagnosis of occupational asthma is most often made on clinical grounds. The gold standard test, specific inhalation challenge, is rarely used. Low molecular weight isocyanates are the most common compounds that cause occupational asthma. Workers with occupational asthma secondary to low molecular weight agents may not have elevated specific IgE levels. The mechanisms of occupational asthma associated with these compounds are partially described. Not all patients with occupational asthma will improve after removal from the workplace.