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What are spores?

Spores are reproductive cells produced by fungi (including molds), and some plants (ferns, moss) and bacteria. Spores help these organisms to spread, and they can cause health symptoms and even serious conditions in some people.
 
For example, in people who are sensitive to mold, exposure to mold spores can cause a stuffy nose, eye, skin and/or throat irritation, wheezing and other breathing difficulties and headaches. Rarely, it can cause severe reactions, including fever and shortness of breath. Because spores are tiny, they can be inhaled into the lungs fairly easily, and people who have chronic lung conditions such as COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) may develop mold infections in their lungs. Other diseases associated with breathing in fungal spores include toxic pneumonitis, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, asthma and chronic sinusitis, among others.

Continue Learning about Respiratory Allergies

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.