[StBernard] Mold Experts Find Evidence Of Biotoxin Illness And
Extreme Levels Of Toxic Mold
westley at da-parish.com
Mon Feb 27 23:46:08 EST 2006
MEDIA AVAILABLE: St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana Government- Mold Experts Find
Evidence Of Biotoxin Illness And Extreme Levels Of Toxic Mold
For Immediate Release
ST. BERNARD PARISH, La./EWORLDWIRE/Feb. 27, 2006 --- More than one-half of
189 patients in five different groups including firemen, parish employees,
health workers and
homeless adults and homeless children are found to have highly elevated
neurological and physical symptoms related to mold illness. In contrast, 22
crew members of the M/S Scotia Prince were normal in identical tests.
Experts recommend expanded medical evaluation/treatment and protective
measures for residents and workers.
A "Mold Clinic" held in St. Bernard Parish, La. February 9-12, 2006 found
that more than half the patients examined exhibited symptoms of biotoxin
illness. Simultaneously, houses in the parish were found to have extremely
high levels of toxin-producing molds including Stachybotrys (also known as
"Our parish was devastated by Katrina with all but two buildings sustaining
flood damage," said Henry Rodriguez, parish president. "We're working hard
to rebuild our community but we must have safe, temporary housing where our
residents can escape constant exposure to widespread mold growth."
The Mold Clinic was run by Dr. Ritchie C. Shoemaker, a nationally known
physician, who has treated more than 5,000 biotoxin illness patients in over
30 years of medical practice and is the author of several books and
scientific articles including "Mold Warriors," published in 2005.
"There is no question about the potential for illness caused by biotoxins in
this population, the data are overwhelming," stated Dr. Shoemaker, in his
report to the Saint Bernard Parish president, parish fire chief, parish
Homeland Security manager and the general manager of the Scotia Prince.
"Our findings support the hypothesis that there are many persons with
exposure to toxigenic organisms including mold, in St. Bernard Parish. These
people should undergo complete medical evaluation and treatment," added Dr.
In a related environmental and landscape assessment in which he took samples
and pictures of the housing and neighborhoods of the Parish, Dr. Richard L.
Lipsey, a forensic toxicologist reported that, "Most of the homes had
extremely high levels (of mold), the highest I have ever seen in my 35 years
of testing homes for toxic mold. The most common pathogenic mold appeared to
be Stachybotrys, sometimes called the 'Black Mold,' known to be ten times
more toxic than the most pathogenic but more common molds, Penicillium and
Aspergillus. Stachybotrys produces tricothocenes which, in highly purified
forms have been developed by the U.S. Army and never used, having since been
Dr. Lipsey continues, "Many of the homes must be bulldozed and burned since
they cannot be salvaged, and none of the parish residents living on the
Scotia Prince (who have remained less affected by the toxins) should return
to their neighborhoods without proper protective equipment."
Results of the mold clinic and sampling from the homes in St. Bernard Parish
follow. The control group for the study consisted of crew aboard the M/S
Scotia Prince which has been docked in the Parish since mid September under
contract to FEMA.
None of the crew showed signs of biotoxin illness and Dr. Shoemaker noted in
his report that "the only 'residential' location in St. Bernard Parish that
did not have its 'residents' (the crew) identified with biotoxin-associated
illness is the M/S Scotia Prince. Trailers installed next to contaminated
buildings, used by persons with unprotected indoor exposure to those
contaminated structures cannot be considered to be a shelter strategy that
provides protection from toxigenic elements, including fungi, resident in
the contaminated structures."
The parish continues to struggle with accommodating residents in the face of
a severe shortage of trailers and the imminent departure of the M/S Scotia
Prince at the conclusion of FEMA's six month charter of the vessel.
To view the summary of the findings, visit
For a full report, visit
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