Pfiesteria in Maryland

preliminary epidemiologic findings.

J. E. Golub, D. T. Haselow, J. C. Hageman, A. S. Lopez, D. W. Oldach, L. M. Grattan, T. M. Perl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In the fall of 1996, fish kills in Maryland rivers were attributed to the dinoflagellate, Pfiesteria piscicida. After a group of researchers established a potential link between exposure to Pfiesteria and an illness causing memory problems, state health authorities closed a portion of the Pocomoke River. To determine the extent of illness, the range of symptoms, potential risk factors for disease, and to provide information to concerned citizens, a toll-free hotline was created. All symptomatic persons who called the toll-free number were administered a standardized questionnaire. Persons who had been exposed to Pfiesteria or Pfiesteria-laden waters were more likely to have respiratory, neurologic, dermatologic, and gastrointestinal problems than those persons without exposure. Among the persons calling the hotline, many had extensive neuropsychologic testing. Of the neuropsychologic test battery, low scores on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT), a standardized measure of learning and memory, best characterized illness related to Pfiesteria exposure. Patients with low RAVLT scores were more likely to have neurologic symptoms and skin lesions than control subjects. Low RAVLT scores were associated with fishing (OR, 9.00, 95% CI, 106, 409.87), catching fish with lesions (OR, 6.17, 95% CI 1.27, 32.10), and handling fish with lesions (OR, 5.34, 95% CI, 1.05, 29.92), but not with consumption of seafood. While preliminary, these results do suggest that some risk factors for Pfiesteria-related illness may be easy to modify and used to prevent unnecessary human exposure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)137-143
Number of pages7
JournalMaryland medical journal (Baltimore, Md. : 1985)
Volume47
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 1998

Fingerprint

Verbal Learning
Hotlines
Fishes
Rivers
Pfiesteria piscicida
Dinoflagellida
Seafood
Neuropsychological Tests
Neurologic Manifestations
Nervous System
Research Personnel
Learning
Skin
Water
Health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Golub, J. E., Haselow, D. T., Hageman, J. C., Lopez, A. S., Oldach, D. W., Grattan, L. M., & Perl, T. M. (1998). Pfiesteria in Maryland: preliminary epidemiologic findings. Maryland medical journal (Baltimore, Md. : 1985), 47(3), 137-143.

Pfiesteria in Maryland : preliminary epidemiologic findings. / Golub, J. E.; Haselow, D. T.; Hageman, J. C.; Lopez, A. S.; Oldach, D. W.; Grattan, L. M.; Perl, T. M.

In: Maryland medical journal (Baltimore, Md. : 1985), Vol. 47, No. 3, 01.01.1998, p. 137-143.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Golub, JE, Haselow, DT, Hageman, JC, Lopez, AS, Oldach, DW, Grattan, LM & Perl, TM 1998, 'Pfiesteria in Maryland: preliminary epidemiologic findings.', Maryland medical journal (Baltimore, Md. : 1985), vol. 47, no. 3, pp. 137-143.
Golub JE, Haselow DT, Hageman JC, Lopez AS, Oldach DW, Grattan LM et al. Pfiesteria in Maryland: preliminary epidemiologic findings. Maryland medical journal (Baltimore, Md. : 1985). 1998 Jan 1;47(3):137-143.
Golub, J. E. ; Haselow, D. T. ; Hageman, J. C. ; Lopez, A. S. ; Oldach, D. W. ; Grattan, L. M. ; Perl, T. M. / Pfiesteria in Maryland : preliminary epidemiologic findings. In: Maryland medical journal (Baltimore, Md. : 1985). 1998 ; Vol. 47, No. 3. pp. 137-143.
@article{f68dcbb7600343e4a1841ab57d198596,
title = "Pfiesteria in Maryland: preliminary epidemiologic findings.",
abstract = "In the fall of 1996, fish kills in Maryland rivers were attributed to the dinoflagellate, Pfiesteria piscicida. After a group of researchers established a potential link between exposure to Pfiesteria and an illness causing memory problems, state health authorities closed a portion of the Pocomoke River. To determine the extent of illness, the range of symptoms, potential risk factors for disease, and to provide information to concerned citizens, a toll-free hotline was created. All symptomatic persons who called the toll-free number were administered a standardized questionnaire. Persons who had been exposed to Pfiesteria or Pfiesteria-laden waters were more likely to have respiratory, neurologic, dermatologic, and gastrointestinal problems than those persons without exposure. Among the persons calling the hotline, many had extensive neuropsychologic testing. Of the neuropsychologic test battery, low scores on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT), a standardized measure of learning and memory, best characterized illness related to Pfiesteria exposure. Patients with low RAVLT scores were more likely to have neurologic symptoms and skin lesions than control subjects. Low RAVLT scores were associated with fishing (OR, 9.00, 95{\%} CI, 106, 409.87), catching fish with lesions (OR, 6.17, 95{\%} CI 1.27, 32.10), and handling fish with lesions (OR, 5.34, 95{\%} CI, 1.05, 29.92), but not with consumption of seafood. While preliminary, these results do suggest that some risk factors for Pfiesteria-related illness may be easy to modify and used to prevent unnecessary human exposure.",
author = "Golub, {J. E.} and Haselow, {D. T.} and Hageman, {J. C.} and Lopez, {A. S.} and Oldach, {D. W.} and Grattan, {L. M.} and Perl, {T. M.}",
year = "1998",
month = "1",
day = "1",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "47",
pages = "137--143",
journal = "Maryland State Medical Journal",
issn = "1538-2656",
publisher = "Medical and Chirugical Faculty of Maryland",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Pfiesteria in Maryland

T2 - preliminary epidemiologic findings.

AU - Golub, J. E.

AU - Haselow, D. T.

AU - Hageman, J. C.

AU - Lopez, A. S.

AU - Oldach, D. W.

AU - Grattan, L. M.

AU - Perl, T. M.

PY - 1998/1/1

Y1 - 1998/1/1

N2 - In the fall of 1996, fish kills in Maryland rivers were attributed to the dinoflagellate, Pfiesteria piscicida. After a group of researchers established a potential link between exposure to Pfiesteria and an illness causing memory problems, state health authorities closed a portion of the Pocomoke River. To determine the extent of illness, the range of symptoms, potential risk factors for disease, and to provide information to concerned citizens, a toll-free hotline was created. All symptomatic persons who called the toll-free number were administered a standardized questionnaire. Persons who had been exposed to Pfiesteria or Pfiesteria-laden waters were more likely to have respiratory, neurologic, dermatologic, and gastrointestinal problems than those persons without exposure. Among the persons calling the hotline, many had extensive neuropsychologic testing. Of the neuropsychologic test battery, low scores on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT), a standardized measure of learning and memory, best characterized illness related to Pfiesteria exposure. Patients with low RAVLT scores were more likely to have neurologic symptoms and skin lesions than control subjects. Low RAVLT scores were associated with fishing (OR, 9.00, 95% CI, 106, 409.87), catching fish with lesions (OR, 6.17, 95% CI 1.27, 32.10), and handling fish with lesions (OR, 5.34, 95% CI, 1.05, 29.92), but not with consumption of seafood. While preliminary, these results do suggest that some risk factors for Pfiesteria-related illness may be easy to modify and used to prevent unnecessary human exposure.

AB - In the fall of 1996, fish kills in Maryland rivers were attributed to the dinoflagellate, Pfiesteria piscicida. After a group of researchers established a potential link between exposure to Pfiesteria and an illness causing memory problems, state health authorities closed a portion of the Pocomoke River. To determine the extent of illness, the range of symptoms, potential risk factors for disease, and to provide information to concerned citizens, a toll-free hotline was created. All symptomatic persons who called the toll-free number were administered a standardized questionnaire. Persons who had been exposed to Pfiesteria or Pfiesteria-laden waters were more likely to have respiratory, neurologic, dermatologic, and gastrointestinal problems than those persons without exposure. Among the persons calling the hotline, many had extensive neuropsychologic testing. Of the neuropsychologic test battery, low scores on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT), a standardized measure of learning and memory, best characterized illness related to Pfiesteria exposure. Patients with low RAVLT scores were more likely to have neurologic symptoms and skin lesions than control subjects. Low RAVLT scores were associated with fishing (OR, 9.00, 95% CI, 106, 409.87), catching fish with lesions (OR, 6.17, 95% CI 1.27, 32.10), and handling fish with lesions (OR, 5.34, 95% CI, 1.05, 29.92), but not with consumption of seafood. While preliminary, these results do suggest that some risk factors for Pfiesteria-related illness may be easy to modify and used to prevent unnecessary human exposure.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0032066462&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0032066462&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

VL - 47

SP - 137

EP - 143

JO - Maryland State Medical Journal

JF - Maryland State Medical Journal

SN - 1538-2656

IS - 3

ER -