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Water Damaged Building

Update on Toxic Mold in Tampa

Last year, we wrote about mold outbreaks at the MacDill Air Force Base and the C.W. Bill Young VA Medical Center. (See our previous post, “Responding to the Mold Outbreak at VA Bay Pines Center.”) Just this month, Stars and Stripes and the Tampa Bay Times reported that five military families have since filed a federal class-action lawsuit “against owners and managers of private housing at MacDill Air Force Base, alleging years of negligence in persistent problems with mold throughout the buildings.” The lawsuit claims that “the Michaels Organization, the private company responsible for managing the on-base housing at MacDill, knew the houses there had mold and did not protect the health and safety of service members and their families.” In one case, Jason Genrich, a chief warrant officer in the Army, developed chest pains, mood swings, dizziness, and fatigue within five months of moving into military housing at MacDill. …

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Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, and Other Waste-Basket Diagnoses

Many people who suffer chronic pain and fatigue find little to no relief from conventional medicine. At best, they are given what we refer to as a “waste-basket diagnosis,” such as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), fibromyalgia, or depression. Worse yet, the doctor runs numerous tests and explains that all the results came back normal — the implication being that the symptoms are all in the patient’s head. The problem with these waste-basket diagnoses is that they are unscientific. Conventional medicine has no test for chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, or depression. Doctors arrive at these diagnoses in one of two ways: They look at a cluster of symptoms and assign it a label. If the patient complains primarily of pain, he or she is likely to be diagnosed as having fibromyalgia. If fatigue is the primary complaint, the patient is diagnosed as having chronic fatigue syndrome. If the symptoms are mood-related, …

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Responding to the Mold Outbreak at VA Bay Pines Center

Recent reports published in the Tampa Bay Times— one in which our Dr. Matt Lewis is referenced in — call attention to a serious health problem at a military housing facility and VA medical center in South Florida… chronic, recurring mold outbreaks that are literally making military personnel and their family members, patients, and treatment providers sick. The reports focus specifically on mold present in housing at MacDill Air Force Base and a mold outbreak at the C.W. Bill Young VA Medical Center. However, mold poses a serious health risk throughout Florida, where heat and humidity provide the ideal environment for it to grow. According to the World Health Organization, more than a quarter of U.S. buildings are water-damaged. One can logically conclude that the percentage is significantly higher in Florida, where we receive an average annual rainfall of 60 inches. Nearly 45 million people across the U.S. live or …

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