The term ‘Sick Building Syndrome' (SBS) is used to describe situations in which building occupants experience acute health and comfort effects that appear to be linked to time spent in a building, but no specific illness or cause can be identified.
In 1984 a World Health Organisation Committee reported that up to 30 percent of new and remodeled buildings worldwide may be subject of excessive complaints related to indoor air quality.
The World Health Organisation defines SBS as “an excess of work-related irritations on the skin and mucous membranes and other symptoms including headache, fatigue and difficulty concentrating reported by workers in modern buildings.”
According to the EPA, indicators of Sick Building Syndrome include the following:
Building occupants complain of symptoms associated with acute discomfort, e.g., headache; eye, nose, or throat irritation; dry cough; dry or itchy skin; dizziness and nausea; difficulty in concentrating; fatigue; and sensitivity to odors.
The cause of the symptoms is not known.
Most of the complainants report relief soon after leaving the building.