What you need to know
Multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) is a chronic condition often referred to as environmental illness, total allergy syndrome, sick building syndrome, chemical intolerance, or idiopathic environmental intolerance.
Reported symptoms of MCS include migraine headaches, asthma, dizziness, difficulty breathing, skin problems, red or watery eyes, swollen lymph nodes, nausea, fast or irregular heartbeat, and muscle or joint pain. MCS symptoms are reported to occur following exposure to concentrations of chemicals that are below the levels that are typically considered harmful for the general population (where the general population includes individuals who may be sensitive to chemicals, such as individuals with asthma).
The evidence that MCS is a medical disorder with established cause and effect relationships between symptoms and low-level chemical exposures is inconclusive. MCS has been described as a subjective illness marked by recurrent, nonspecific symptoms that occur in the absence of consistent objective diagnostic findings.
Given currently insufficient evidence to establish a causal relationship between any specific level of exposure and MCS symptoms, DPH recommends that individuals who have any symptoms seek the advice of a health care provider knowledgeable regarding the specific symptoms.