Are we on the threshold of a new theory of disease? Toxicant-induced loss of tolerance and its relationship to addiction and abdiction

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35 Scopus citations

Abstract

Toxicant-induced loss of tolerance' (or TILT) describes a two-step disease process in which (1) certain chemical exposures, e.g., indoor air contaminants, chemical spills, or pesticide applications, cause certain susceptible persons to lose their prior natural tolerance for common chemicals, foods, and drugs (initiation); (2) subsequently, previously tolerated exposures trigger symptoms. Responses may manifest as addictive or abdictive (avoidant) behaviors. In some affected individuals, overlapping responses to common chemical, food, and drug exposures, as well as habituation to recurrent exposures, may hide (mask) responses to particular triggers. Accumulating evidence suggests that this disease process might underlie a broad array of medical illnesses including chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, migraine headaches, depression, asthma, the unexplained illnesses of Gulf War veterans, multiple chemical sensitivity, and attention deficit disorder.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)284-294
Number of pages11
JournalToxicology and Industrial Health
Volume15
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1999

Keywords

  • Gulf War veterans
  • addiction
  • chemical intolerance
  • chronic fatigue
  • environmental illness
  • multiple chemical sensitivity
  • theory of disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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