Barb Wilkie's EHN Website
Last updated 2008

EHN Board President Barb Wilkie was very ill from chemically-induced kidney disease for several years. She passed away May 31, 2011. EHN presents this site both as a tribute and as valuable information. Many links and references will be out of date but Barb's research holds up over time. We will be transferring the site page by page, with updated details, to EHN's main site. If you would like to reach an EHN staff person, please contact us directly.

EHN's MCS Links



MCS: You can't "catch" it, but you can prevent it.

MCS takes life. It takes it in quality. It takes it ultimately, prematurely. My efforts are dedicated to all who are experiencing life with MCS and to the memory of those who have suffered premature death because of it.

Live the adage: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!   -- barb



MCS is a physiological (NOT psychological) malady
known worldwide, affecting all ages, genders and races.
-- barb



Clicking on the alpha character above will take you to another page of links.

Use the lower set of clickables to get you to a specific section or
go through this MCS category slowly, scrolling and visiting the various
links out. If you learn of a dead link, or a link that should be here but is not,
please inform me at (Barb's email is no longer valid, please contact EHN) and put WWW on the subject line.

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M

N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

In this box, I bring you a few starting points for your research. This entire page may seem
overwhelming, but when I began this site for EHN, there was precious little information about
chemical injury. The two "early birds" I had found were Cyndi Norman, who now has
Immune Web ( and
Jacki who has MCS Support (

Since I began building EHN's site, the amount of good information has grown -- along with the
industry and its apologist's disinformation sources. "Overwhelming" only means that you
certainly are not "alone" although the people in power -- be they your manager, your doctor or
your friends or family members -- all seem to think that if they marginalize your condition they
won't be adversely affected. Amazing. And when we drop them from our social circle, they claim
we are antisocial, suffering from panic attacks, needing mental help, etc., while they continue
using and wearing their poisonous products that pollute their bodies and yours . . . and
air and water for all of us, including the creatures with whom we share this planet.

Well, this overwhelming page should tell you -- and them -- that you are not alone. Research takes
time. You've lived with MCS symptoms for some time before you found EHN . . . so take your
time now and find the solutions -- or the questions -- that seem to best fit in with your body's needs.

Personally, my health has improved. It has taken years after getting out of a toxic workplace,
with the help of chiropractic and acupuncture and Chinese herbs and learned pressure points
and avoidance of the toxins in commonly used products to the extent possible for my family life.

We'll all stand a chance of recovery -- and better yet, PREVENTION -- once the powers that be
start recognizing that chronic diseases including cancers, benign tumors, Parkinson's,
rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, migraines, etc., are all versions of ENVIRONMENTAL ILLNESS,

Help yourself and others, start unloading your "body burden" by demanding safer,
fragrance-free, pesticide-free alternative products be made available and used in your schools,
workplaces, healthcare facilities, transit conveyances, government buildings, places of worship . . .
and in your home! In fact, start with YOUR body and your home. In AND around your home.
Your home should be your safe refuge.

We ALL are stakeholders when it comes to breathing.© -- barb

A national population study of the prevalence of multiple chemical sensitivity.
by Caress SM, Steinemann AC.

Adelaide City Council's South Australian Task Force
"In acknowledgement of National Chemical Injury and Sensitivity Day a public health rally
recognising Multiple Chemical Sensitivity will be held on the steps of Parliament House
on Wednesday 20 September, 2006, between 12 pm and 1 pm. ...
Out of respect for people with MCS please do not wear perfume, after shave,
essential oils or other highly fragranced products at this event.

The continuing campaign for recognition of MCS has resulted in a huge step forward with
theÝState GovernmentÝincludingÝMCS in its Disability Action Plan for government
buildings.ÝÝA copy of the Plan is available at California MCS organizations

California Health and Safety Code 41700

    41700. Except as otherwise provided in Section 41705, no person
    shall discharge from any source whatsoever such quantities of air
    contaminants or other material which cause injury, detriment,
    nuisance, or annoyance to any considerable number of persons or to
    the public, or which endanger the comfort, repose, health, or safety
    of any such persons or the public, or which cause, or have a natural
    tendency to cause, injury or damage to business or property.

    NOTE: 41705 deals with agricultural odors.

Chemcial Injury.Net -- Dr. Ziem

Changes in Levels of Nerve Growth Factor in Nasal Secretions after Capsaicin
Inhalation in Patients with Airway Symptoms from Scents and Chemicals

Eva Millqvist, Ewa Ternesten-Hass»us, Arne St¬hl,1 and Mats Bende
Environmental Health Perspectives Volume 113, Number 7, July 2005


Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)
(Section, this page.)

Common symptoms of MCS
This is my life! But more so, while I was gainfully employed. Eight years following early retirement, some of my worse symptoms have lessened. Now I'm into stage five renal disease. -- barb
  • anaphylactic shock
  • difficulty breathing, chest pains and asthma
  • skin irritation, contact dermatitis, and hives or other forms of skin rash
  • migraine headaches
  • "brain fog" (short term memory loss, cognitive dysfunction, including attention deficit)
  • digestive difficulties, nausea, indigestion/heartburn, vomiting, diarrhea
  • food intolerances, which may or may not be clinically identifiable (e.g., lactose intolerance, celiac disease). Commonly wheat and dairy.
  • joint and muscle pains
  • extreme fatigue, lethargy and lassitude
  • vertigo/dizziness
  • abnormally acute sense of smell (which may simply be the result of ridding one's home of strong masking scents, therefore purging olfactory neurons)
  • sensitivity to natural plant fragrance, pine turpines
  • insomnia
  • dry mouth, dry eyes
  • overactive bladder
Commonly suspect chemicals
This pretty much covers what causes my reactions. FRAGRANCE products were and are my biggest nemesis. They are ubiquitous and leave the users to affect everyone, regardless of age or stage of llife; including developing embryos and fetuses. The government should demand warnings be affixed to labels for use of artificial flavors and fragrances. I'd also add refineries and chemical plants to the following list. I suggest researchers and doctors think CARBON as opposed to looking at PROTEIN for an explanation of MCS. And, remember, our experts lament the soaring, "UNEXPLAINED" rates of asthma, cancers, alzheimer's Parkinson's, ADD, ADHD, CFIDS, lupus, birth defects, . . . you-name-it! I suggest that these be viewed as "Environmental Illnesses" caused by our reliance on petrochemically derived products, including pharmaceuticals, released to market without full substantiation of safety. -- barb
  • bleach, fabric softeners, wool-wash, and detergents
  • perfumes, air-fresheners and anything scented or perfumed
  • petrol or gasoline, diesel and exhaust fumes
  • pesticides, fertilisers, and other agricultural chemicals
  • shampoos, hairsprays and personal care products
  • dishwashing liquid and detergent (may cause migraine headaches for those without MCS)
  • most glues (including carpet glue), varnishes, polishes, paints, solvents and paint-thinners
  • petroleum-based products (including petroleum jelly)
  • Formaldehyde and aldehyde In particular, offgassing chemicals (some odorless, some not) are suspect.

DEFINING CHEMICAL INJURY: A Diagnostic Protocol and Profile of
Chemically Injured Civilians, Industrial Workers and Gulf War Veterans

G. Heuser, M.D.,Ph.D., P. Axelrod, and S. Heuser, M.A.
"... Patients should be encouraged to list what appear to be "allergic" or "sensitive"
reactions to chemical substances, which were previously not experienced as harmful.
These include chemicals such as gasoline, fumes and perfumes, household cleaners and
other chemicals in everyday use. Reactions to these chemicals may include skin rashes,
hives, eye and throat irritations, sinus problems, nausea, dizziness, and flu-like
symptoms. These may have developed during the initial chemical exposure but may
also recur when a patient has become chemically sensitive and now reacts to even low
amounts of a given chemical or chemical mixture. This reaction to low level exposure is
called Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) [Cullen, 1987]. If not carefully evaluated,
MCS patients will easily be misdiagnosed as suffering from somatization disorder,
post-traumatic stress disorder or other psychiatric labels. ..."

Definition of Disabling MCS/EI used by Ecology House Inc.

Ecology House, San Rafael, CA
It works! Nevermind the dissembling reporting of John Stossel, ABC 20/20.
There should be MORE Ecology Houses across this nation.
Better yet, all homes and offices should be built with safer materials and
by using safer methods. Once built, care must be taken to use safer products.
Prevention is the solution. -- barb

   Disabling MCS defined by Ecology House
   Fragrance-Free defined by Ecology House
Ecology House's own website

Government and Medical Science Finally Recognize
Crippling Effects of MCS
(in Canada)
"...Nevertheless, the reality is that when a person carries an
MCS diagnosis, the competing interests of insurance
companies, employers, and government programs often
erect seemingly insurmountable barriers for the applicant.
Furthermore, not only is MCS a new disease, but it is
caused by substances upon which industrialized
economies depend. ..."
By Helke Ferrie

"In sum, we conclude that MCS and EI can constitute handicaps
under the Act. Our conclusion is consistent with the weight of
both federal and state judicial authority construing the Act and
comparable legislation, the Act's legislative history, as well as
the interpretation of other Federal agencies, such as the Social
Security Administration and the Department of Education,
construing legislation within their respective domains. The
Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice has also
informed us that it believes MCS and EI can be handicaps under
the Act. In addition, HUD has consistently articulated this
position, and FHEO agrees with our conclusion."

MCS: A Sensitive Issue
Environmental Health Perspectives, Volume 102, Number 9, September 1994
This paper was written not all that long after the chemical industry's treatise, Environmental
Illness Briefing Paper
, published in 1990. I say, SMELL THE MONEY, when you read all of the
MCS nay-sayers. I find that it is those with strong chemical industry connections who are most
vociferous in their denial of MCS. It's the old vested interest thing . . . or whose ox is gored. I hope
I live long enough to find that workplaces, schools and all healthcare facilities, among other
entities, decide that it is healthwise for all to go fragrance-free. When you see the words "perfume"
or "fragrance" on mainstream products, think PETROCHEMICALLY DERIVED. That is NOT green.
-- barb

MCS America

MCS Facts (from movie, Exposed by Heidrun Holzfeind)d

MCS International links
(This page.)

MCS Consensus Statement, 1999 - 34 signatories
(Leave EHN's site. Please use your browser's back button to return.)

MCS: Think "functional impairment," not diagnosis.
For example, two people could have diabetes. For one, it is a minor
inconvenience. The other person is in line for amputations, blindness,
and kidney failure. Same diagnosis, different degrees of impairment.
MCS works the same way, so does asthma. So does cancer.
-- Susan Molloy

MCS Under Siege by Dr. Ann McCampbell

MCS: What It Is, What It Is Not, And How It Is Manifested
By Shelia Bastien, PhD; © July 20, 1995

Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)
Martin L. Pall, Professor

Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)
"[D]evoted to answering basic questions about Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)."

OUT of the MCS Closet! Sadly, we've since lost this coach.

Recognition of MCS as a Legitimate Disease and/or Disability
Who opposes recognition of MCS.
MCS Referral & Resources

-- A Scent Free Campaign --

Check this site out! Lots of helpful advice.
I hope your management team has an open mind!
Like a parachute, it takes an open mind to work. -- author unknown

Return to GENERAL Links, page M.
Some of the links on this page are not to organizations, but to articles, etc.,
that may prove helpful to the individual living with MCS and seeking access
and accommodation. Speaking of access and accommodation, I suggest employers
accept that MCS is a disability (officially, it is so recognized on a case-by-case basis)
and then listen to the valued employee for ways to best accommodate. The goal
is access so the chemically injured person can continue doing his or her job,
while meeting the entity's mission and earning a salary.

EHN has a page dedicated to access and accommodation guidelines.
From QuickClicks, on EHN's HomePage, click on Access or Take Heart!

M -- MCS Category
Multiple Chemical Sensitivity


To skip the intro . . .


Multiple Chemical Sensitivity. There, I've said it's name out loud.

And with that I ask that you keep in mind: About the time there is focus on the toxic effects of the plethora of petrochemicals in our commonly used products -- and which upon inhaling and absorbing can become one with our bodies -- the industry apologists start coming forth with their hype about hypochondria, psychosomatic illness, et al.

The yet-to-become-ill hear how folks make themselves sick and all they need is psychotherapy and prescribed medicines. It sets up a divide. It becomes Darwinian socialism in the workplace, schools, healthcare facilities, ... everywhere, without a thought to tomorrow and the sudden turn of events that can happen to anyone with yet one more chemical assault. Sorely lacking is study of the effects of petrochemical-derived substances and products at cellular level. And without that, the still relatively healthy don't realize that MCS maybe just a breath away for them or their family members.

As pharmaceuticals are also synthesized from petrochemicals, plus spiked with the petrochemical-derived essences of the flavors and fragrance industry, it is no wonder to me that we so often fare better without drugs. Yet that flummoxes mainstream medical doctors who have not been adequately trained to even recognize symptoms of pesticide poisoning.1 It is no wonder to me that the medical industry has gone after our EI doctors with a vengeance.

The subject of Mulitple Chemical Sensitivity and all of its ramifications needs investigation. Not of the ill, not of our doctors and researchers who seek to understand and help us come to know of the effects of the myriad of chemicals upon our bodies. We need a thorough investigation of the perpetrators and those who have done nothing to help as public health has tanked.

I ask you to also keep in mind, the medical industry's tendency to mix apples and oranges, or in the case of those living with MCS, the mainstream medical doctors mix allergy and chemical sensitization. Think about what causes allergies . . . and you'll think of a lot of protein-based substances. Think of what causes MCS . . . chemicals. And most of those chemicals are highly volatile and found in commonly used personal care products, as well as household and janitorial cleaning and maintenance products. I ask also that you keep in mind that there isn't just one chemical in any of the products in daily use. So with that in mind, it is good to be wary of phthalate laden products and know that phthalates are a commonly used fragrance ingredient to help make that scent last, but there are more harmful chemicals in fragrances than just phthalates!

You will find -- if you analyze a fragrance -- chemicals that are known or suspected carcinogens (capable of causing cancer), hormone disrupters, irritants (defined by Oxford Dictionary as POISON), neurotoxins (affecting brain and nervous systems), sensitizers (fragrance chemicals were known lung sensitizers back in 1977), and teratogens (capable of causing embryonic and fetal development problems). That's a heady brew to be unleashing upon an unsuspecting, inadequately informed public. In my estimation.

There has been a rush to get products to market with no thought of consequences to health of users, let alone non-users who are adversely affected secondhand. Our government agencies are without proper authority as the industry is self-regulated and protected by outmoded trade secret laws. "Rip-off" products demonstrate that modern technology allows copy. Why should trade secret protection keep our health agencies in the dark? To keep the buying public in the dark seems to highlight the need to hide the truth about petrochemical-derived essences for flavors and fragrances. The public's right to know has been pre-empted by an industry in pursuit of the almighty dollar.

I want doctors and researchers to start seriously looking at the effects of flavored and scented products. Some have started looking at pesticides and that is good, but fragrances and flavors are still off their radar screen. In the meantime, I ask that they stop with their oft-repeated, one-word non-explanation explanation "UNEXPLAINED" when asked about the soaring rates of asthma and other upper and lower respiratory diseases, cancers, migraines, ataxia, aphasia and other central nervous system disorders, of Parkinson's and Alzhiemer's, of ADD and ADHD, CFIDS, lupus, ... And just about the time a doctor states that that's too many diseases, think about the thousands of inadequately tested chemicals used just by the flavors and fragrance industry. The tens to hundreds of individual chemicals in any one flavor or fragrance can cause any number of adverse reactions . . . and diseases. Further, know, that that doesn't even begin to touch the total number -- tens of thousands -- of chemicals released to market unsubstantiated for safety.

There's something terribly wrong in not looking at the adverse effects of absorbing and inhaling volatile organic compounds from flavors and fragrances while simply dismissing the soaring rates of various chronic diseases and premature deaths, affecting people worldwide -- all races, ages, genders -- as UNEXPLAINED.



1.  The quote is from a publication by a multiagency group, including EPA:
"doctors are likely to have attended the 75 percent of the medical schools that require only seven hours training during their medical schooling." Source: Health Care & Pesticides, National Strategies for Health Care Providers: Pesticides Initiative -- initiative report's documentation: Schenk M, Popp SM, Neale AV, et al. Environmental medicine content in medical school curricula. Acad. Med. 1996;71(5):27-29.

Note, if a link doesn't work, try to search for the title via
Some links change often. Sometimes information is removed. I cannot keep up.

This section on Multiple Chemical Sensitivity includes
organizations serving folks living with MCS. If you know of
other organizations you feel should be listed here, please inform.

An interesting note: I've heard complaints that there is
"too much good information." Now doesn't that start to tell
those who poo-poo MCS a thing or ten? -- barb


To accentuate the obvious, the word above is "physiological," not "psychological." Multiple
Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) is also known as Environmental Illness (EI), Chemical Injury (CI),
20th Century Illness, TILT ... The more names, the more confusing; the more the chemical
industry apologists and undereducated mainstream medical doctors can stultify us. (The
stats are in a publication by a multiagency group, including EPA, that tells us: "doctors are likely
to have attended the 75 percent of the medical schools that require only seven hours training
during their medical schooling." Health Care & Pesticides (a multiagency -- National
Strategies for Health Care Providers: Pesticides initiative report's documentation: Schenk M,
Popp SM, Neale AV, et al. Environmental medicine content in medical school curricula. Acad.
Med. 1996;71(5):27-29.)

And lest I be judged as not giving due consideration to the effects of "mind over
matter," let me assure you that those of us who live with EI/MCS function because we
know how important the mind-body connection is and we work with that. However, I
do get a bit testy at the suggestion that we do not understand that our illnesses are --
or can be -- psychological in nature.

To my mind, that is a convenient "red herring" to avoid looking at, and acknowldging
the true situation: ubiquitous synthetic chemicals! Those psychological or stress diagnoses
also make convenient excuses for pushing drugs, er ah, writing prescriptions for drugs such
as Prozac. The chemical industry benefits. But do you?

We are the harbingers of the effects of MATTER over mind.

Before getting into the plethora of links available from this page -- THAT, in and of itself
should indicate just how widespread the adverse events are as a result of our modern reliance
on synthetic chemical products, including prescribed and OTC drugs, personal care products,
household and janitorial cleaning and maintenance products, ... Please read the following features.

  • The Best Science Money Can Buy By Will Moredock
    A worthwhile read! And, at the top of the page, you'll find,
    Sick, Yes--Psycho, No
    People With Multiple Chemical Sensitivities Fight To Be Believed

    by Will Moredock.


  • AMA article,Doctors debate "chemical sensitivity" diagnosis,
    by Mark Moranstaff, HEALTH & SCIENCE,
    Quoting Mr. Moranstaff:
      "... Everybody sees [such [MCS] patients]," said Myron Genel, MD, chair of AMA's Council
      on Scientific Affairs and associate dean at Yale University School of Medicine, New
      Haven, Conn. "They go up and down the food chain of medical specialists and get no
      relief. They are ill, but a precise scientific understanding and definition has been elusive."

      "In 1991, the council approved a report stating that there were "no well controlled studies
      establishing a clear mechanism or cause" for MCS. Dr. Genel said the council considered
      revisiting the topic this year, but found no compelling evidence to change its
      earlier conclusions.


    It's not so hard to figure out why MCS is denied a position as a medical disorder. It is the
    economy of the chemical industry and its various facets. We are on a not-so-merry-chemical-go-
    'round! It isn't lost on me that in 1991 the AMA's council came to its conclusion . . . that followed
    just a little too closely, the then Chemial Manufacturers Association's 1990 publication of the
    daming call-to-arms "Environmental Illness Briefing Paper." Certainly, Dr. Grace Ziem sees what
    would lie ahead for the industry IF the mainstream chemical medical industry would
    acknowledge MCS.


      "What would happen if it [MCS] were recognized as a diagnosis?" Dr. Ziem asked.
      "Reasonable accommodation would be required in public places, meaning
      that we would have nontoxic pest control, nontoxic air fresheners, and less-toxic
      cleaning agents. The chemical industry is quite aware that if this condition became
      recognized, there would be sales implications in the billions [of dollars]."

    Should anyone think the chemical industry is not the driving force behind MCS
    "controversy" and its not being recognized by the mainstream medical industry,
    read the Chemical Manufacturers Association's 1990 call-to-arms,
    Environmental Illness Briefing Paper.

    I, among so many activists, have always said, "It is only a matter of time" . . . until MCS and
    chemical injury become recognized by mainstream medical. Our numbers are swelling and at such
    time as it is seen as a business liability to continue to ignore our pleas for cleaner air and less
    toxic products, MCS will be recognized. Please remember, the medical industry was not so
    swift on the topic of asthma or tuberculosis or pellagra, either.

    In the meantime, how many more of our environmental doctors will be subjected to "witch hunts"
    and have to fight for their medical licenses?How many millions upon millions more people will
    have to live with and die prematurely from the toxins volatilizing from commonly used
    consumer products released to market without adequate testing? How long before mainstream
    medical doctors are educated to recognize symptoms of chemical injury? How long before medical
    doctors learn to not simply write a prescription for mind-altering drugs, artificially swelling
    the ranks of folks who have been diagnosed as having "psychological" problems, who in reality
    live with MCS? This is a physiological malady. Anything that manifests itself as psychological
    may well be the result of MCSers having to deal with a medical system, a justice system,
    schools and workplaces that just don't get it. Get IT that cleaner air for the already chemically
    injured means healthier air for all.

    Just look at the composition of products sold as benign, our commonly used perfumes, cosmetics
    and scented personal care products, plus all of the scented products used for household and
    janitorial cleaning and maintenance chores. They contain chemicals that are known or suspected
    carcinogens (capable of causing cancer), hormone disrupters, irritants (read: POISON),
    neurotoxins (affecting your brain and nervous systems), sensitizers (skin and lungs) and
    teratogens (adversely affect developing embryos and fetuses).

    Folks, there is no FDA or EPA government regulation that's going to save your health, your lives.
    The flavors and fragrance industry is self regulated. It is further protected by trade secret laws
    and fragmentation of government authority . . . such as it is.

    YOU better start making wiser purchases of safer products.

    You can save petroleum AND save the air. Consumer products contribute big time to smog, also
    to water pollution, as synthetic scents, drugs, et al., do not "wash out" in waste treatment
    practices. You can purchase eco-friendly, petroleumn-, fragrance- and dye-free household and
    janitorial products -- and by doing so, you'll not only save the air, but you'll save on the use of
    petroleum too. You can purchase paints, carpets, adhesives that have lower-emitting VOCs
    (volatile organic compounds). And, you can purchase personal care products that are not
    synthetically scented (Hint, look for ORGANICS . . . and near organics, because "fragrance-
    free" or "unscented" on the label means nothing; by law, such products can carry a masking
    scent.) The sooner we all start making safer, wiser purchases, the better for all of us AND
    our fish and wildlife downstream, too.

    Before you get started scrolling through the links below, I'd like to direct your attention to some
    papers that I consider "Must reads!" Those on MCS are also listed at the top of this page.

  • Environmental Illness Briefing Paper
    This is the paper I've dubbed the industry's call-to-arms. Read it carefully. Take special note of
    their "Forming Coalition." Now, all you naysayers, tell me MCS is psychological. I'm likely to
    counter with we are the victims of not only chemical poisoning, but psychological warfare.


  • Fragrance: Emerging Health and Environmental Concerns
    By Betty Bridges, RN; Flavours and Fragrance, the industry's journal


  • MCS Consensus Statement, 1999 - 34 Signatories


  • MCS Under Siege by Dr. Ann McCampbell


  • MCS: What It Is, What It Is Not, And How It Is Manifested
    By Shelia Bastien, PhD; © July 20, 1995

    Now, onto the links. I make no guarantees that they are all working, but they were when I built
    them. Sometimes sites change their pages or their servers, and the links die. Should that
    happen, use a search engine and see if you can find their new home. IF you find a replacement
    link, please let me know and I'll fix it on EHN's site as soon as possible. Thanks. -- barb

    -- A --

    A Canary's Eye View

    A Review of the Scientific Literature As It Pertains to Gulf War Illness
    Includes a chapter on MCS, chapter 11. Also, if you are looking for info on GWS,
    please visit the site of Alison Johnson and her Chemical Sensitivity Foundation. -- barb

    ABCGED (Association of BC Government Employees with Disabilities)

    Access Board Holds SF Bay Area Town Meeting (also see EHN's Government Links)


    Access for People With Environmental Illness/
    and Other Related Conditions
    , Final Report, September 30, 1996

    Accommodation Guidelines
    Also known as EHN's Take Heart! or Access, available through QuickClicks on Homepage.


    Achieving Healthy Indoor Air
    Report of the ATS Workshop: Santa Fe, New Mexico, November 16-19, 1995
    MARCH 1997
    Other Point Sources in Homes and Offices
    " . . . Control of pollution sources is incomplete if the odors from the occupants are not
    minimized. Perfumes are among the most difficult to control since they are perceived
    by their users as pleasurable. Personal rights and preferences for perfumed products
    must be evaluated against the discomfort that scents cause for some people. The
    odoriferous materials are highly volatile synthetic chemicals; in effect, they contribute
    to the total VOCs. Scented personal products are not limited to perfumes; they include
    residual scents on clothing from detergents and fabric softeners, soaps, shampoos,
    deodorants, skin lotions, and cosmetics. The only successful method of control is to
    eliminate these odors, either by avoiding their use, as with perfumes, or by using
    unscented products. ...

    Two-bits' worth by barb: Let me assure everyone, it is not mere "discomfort that scents
    cause for some people," although, they too, should not have to be forced to inhale another person's
    choice of odor. But for the already chemically injured -- POISONED -- it can be a life and death
    situation. Now, how can any employer, school administrator, healthcare administrator and/or
    management or executives of government entities, grant the right to odorovect toxic chemicals
    from personal care products over another's right to breathe? I ask you. The goal should be
    cleaner air for all; not the pleasure of wearing or using toxic synthetic fragrance products for some.

    Nova Scotia's Environmental Illness Online Newsletter
    When online with RainForest, under "Choose a suburb,"
    select "RainForest/Canopy" then view 4357

    Agencies and Advocate Groups
    for the Chemically Sensitive / Environmentally Ill

    The Ailing Environment - Chemical Sensitivity

    Air, etc. Also see EHN's General Links, page A, Air, Air Fresheners, Air Quality . . .

    Air Quality - A look at Environmental Illness Dan Knight; May 7, 2000

    Alaska MCS Association
    Tel/Fax (907) 243-5800
    You can order "Allergy Alert Cookbook - The World's Best From East To West"

    Allergy and MCS Distinguished, C. S. Miller, N. A. Ashford

    Allergy and MCS Help
    Dr. Cathcart
    (Includes an MCS chat page.)

  • Allergy, Sensitivity & Environmental Health Association


    Alpha Omega Christian Communities For The Chemically Injured

  • American Academy of Dermatology
    Allergies: Culprit Could be in Cosmetic Bag
    "... Dermatologists recommend that people who experience allergic contact dermatitis
    adhere to the following program to avoid some of the most probable offending agents,
    with specific patch testing performed once the dermatitis is clear:
      -- For clothing care, double rinse all detergents and avoid all fabric softeners.

      -- Try to wear pure, untreated cotton in light colors. Avoid permanent press or
      cotton blends. Silk and polyester are acceptable.

      -- Wash all new clothing items five times before wearing.

      -- Use only fragrance-free soaps, body cleansers, shampoos and conditioners.

      -- Avoid all perfumes, colognes, and after-shaves.

      -- Do not use any fingernail care products or hair spray.

    "The American Academy of Dermatology, founded in 1938, is the largest, most influential,
    and most representative of all dermatologic associations. ..."
    Great advice as far as it goes. But, again, the subject of fragrances is being dealt with as if it is
    a problem unique to that one individual and all that one individual has to do is to AVOID
    USING scented products. It is the nature of the beast to become one with the air we all must

    To spell out the obvious: Our modern fragrances are volatile organic compounds, therefore they
    become the air we all must breathe. Synthetic scents are not tested for reactions to skin beyond
    those of the primary user.

    When will our government agencies and health care societies begin to look at the fact that
    fragrances contain volatile chemicals that are known or suspected hormone disrupters, irritants,
    sensitizers, carcinogens, tertatogens and neurotoxins? Fragrances should be tested BEFORE
    marketing for their adverse effects upon users and nonusers who suffer adverse events at
    secondary and tertiary levels of exposure. Fragrances should be tested for their effects upon the
    reproductive systems of developing fetuses as well males and females of all ages. Fragrances should
    be researched for their effects upon the respiratory systems of users and non users; for their
    neurotoxic effects upon users and non users; for their potential cancer-causing capabilities for
    users and non users. Come to think of it, if there is synthetic scent in the air, we all are users!.
    And therein lies the reason more and more people are seeking fragrance-free accommodation! -- barb

    American Academy of Environmental Medicine

    American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM) Position Paper
    An industry perspective. When will they begin looking at the volatile toxins and recognize the
    fact that exposures do not only happy to primary users of fragrances, pesticides, etc.? -- barb

    American Environmental Health Foundation (AEHF)

  • American Journal of Epidemiology

    American PIE (Public Information on the Environment)
    From American PIE's Spring 1998 newsletter, an article:
    MCS Multiplies -- "Environmental illness is on
    the rise. Reports of MCS come from callers to American PIE
    every day. We respond with sympathy -- American PIE has
    no medical staff -- and with medical and support resources
    which are scattered across the country. ..."

    e-mail:, or call: 1.800.320.APIE

    Anderson Labs of West Hartford, Vermont (We welcome their new website! 12/2/98)

      Article (Membership only) about "...Drs. Rosalind C. and Julius H. Anderson [who]
      investigated the respiratory toxicity of chemicals emitted by children's bedding..."

      Anderson Labs
      PO Box 323
      West Hartford, VT 05084

    • Health effects of indoor air pollutants, SBS (sick building syndrome),
      MCS (multiple chemical sensitivity), and asthma.

      "Many people are being poisoned every day by chemicals in the air they breath. ..."


        Items available (be sure to check with Anderson for latest price information):
        [Carpets] The Whole Story -- $15.00 each
        (an easy to understand booklet)

        Scientific papers -- $10.00 each

        • Reactions to Carpet Emissions: A Case Series
        • Acute Toxic Effects of Fragrance Products
        • Use of ASTM E 981 to Estimate Irritant Potency of Room Air and Offgassing of Commercial Products
        • The Challenge of Asthma (from the *Lancet* Conference 1997, Tours, France)
        • Bioassay of Indoor Air for Irritant Effects
        • Bioassay of Irritant Chemicals in Indoor Air
        • Toxic Emissions From Carpets
        • Toxic Effects of Air Freshener Emissions

        Videos: perfume, air fresheners, schools -- $25 each / roughly 5-10 mins. each
        BUT well worth it . . . you really identify with the mice! -- barb

    Arizona Technology Access Program
    Institute for Human Development
    Northern Arizona University

    • Low-Emission Computers


    • Arizona Technology Access Program
      Symptoms of MCS
      Funding is provided by the U.S. Department of Education, National Institute on
      Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) Grant #H224A40002.

      Or, available through this URL . . .

    • MCS



        Pamela Alcala, Administrative Assistant
        Box 5630
        Flagstaff, AZ 86011-5630
        (520) 523-5879 - Voice
        (520) 523-1695 - TTY
        (520) 523-9127 - Fax
        (800) 553-0714 - Toll Free


  • The Armchair Activist

  • Artists with MCS Connections for a Safer World - An International Network

    Asthma -- See EHN's General Links, page A, Asthma

    " More than 17 million Americans suffer from asthma, which is the seventh-ranking
    chronic condition in America. " © 2000 American Lung Association.

    Asthma in Schools [from EPA]
    Perfumes, scented cleaning agents and air "fresheners" would be at the TOP of my list! -- barb
    Each day, one in five Americans occupies a school building and the majority of these
    occupants are children. Environmental asthma triggers commonly
    found in school
    buildings are cockroaches and other pests, mold resulting from excess moisture in the
    building, and dander from animals in the classroom. Secondhand smoke and dust mites
    are other known environmental asthma triggers found in schools. In addition, some
    literature suggests children with asthma may be affected by other pollutants found
    in schools from such sources as un-vented stoves or heaters and common products
    such as cleaning agents, perfumes, and sprays. [Emphasis added.]
    Effectively managing a child¼s asthma can best be accomplished through a comprehensive
    plan that addresses both the medical management of the disease and avoidance of
    environmental triggers. Since children spend most of their time in schools, day care
    facilities, or at home, it is important to reduce their exposure to environmental asthma
    triggers as much as possible in each of these environments. This publication focuses on
    steps that schools can take to help children breathe easier.

    Asthma, The Segal Guide to
    Dr. Segal says: "Avoid perfume"

    ATSDR - MCS Report, Predecision Draft

    Attitudes Regarding MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivities)
    by Barbara Herskovitz January 26, 1999

    Arizona Technology Access Program

    Audio Tapes for sale by EHN

    Autoimmune Disease and the Environment,
    Environmental Health Perspectives
    Volume 106, Number 12 December 1998

    Avoid Fragrances: Adverse Reactions to Fragrances

  • Awareness2000

    Use the following clickables to speed you along in the MCS category:

    | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q |
    | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |

    To top of page.


    -- B --

    2126 Los Angeles Avenue
    Berkley, CA 94707-2618
    (510) 526-7391
    FAX 525-9601
    "Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS): What It Is, What It Is Not, And How It Is Manifested"
    By Shelia Bastien, PhD; © July 20, 1995

    Best Environmental Directories
    with worldwide links

    The Best Science Money Can Buy
    By Will Moredock

    ( Presented on May 12 and 13, 1994 to officials of the Departments of Defense and
    Veterans Affairs and officials of the Environmental Protection Agency and ATSDR.)

    Albert Donnay, MCS Referral & Resources


    Blazing Tattles
    Claire Gilbert PhD, publisher

    Books on MCS and related topics
    See General Links, page B, Books at


    See EHN's General Links, page B, Brain


  • Brainstorms
    The Newsletter of the Greensboro CFS/FMS/MCS Support Group

  • British Society for Allergy and Environmental Medicine

    • Effective Allergy Practice
      by Dr Honor Anthony and others; booklet: An outline of the best clinical practice in
      the management of allergies and intolerances; 18 pages, 200 references.
      £5.00 inc pp from BSAENM, PO Box 7, Knighton, LD7 1WT, U.K.
      Tel: 01547 550380 (+44 1547 550380)
      "Syndromes which may be induced or exacerbated by reactions to food or
      environmental factors
      Irritable bowel syndrome and Crohn's disease
      Cerebral symptoms
      Unexplained fatigue
      Abacterial cystitis and bladder pain
      Multi-system polysymptomatic illness"


  • British Society for Allergy, Environmental and Nutritional Medicine - BSAEN