Newswise — The official mold count for the Midwest today is 55,000 –well over the 50,000 threshold that signals a dangerous air quality warning. This is the fourth time a high mold alert has been declared in the 2011 allergy reporting season and this is the second highest mold count for the year.

“The warm September temperatures and sunny skies have encouraged the growth of a bumpercrop of mold and my phones at Gottlieb are ringing with sufferers,” said Dr. Joseph Leija, allergist, who performs the official allergy count on behalf of the National Allergy Bureau. “Headaches, sinus congestion, runny noses and fatigue will be common among Midwesterners today.”

Dr. Joseph Leija, allergist at Loyola’s Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, is solely certified by the National Allergy Bureau to perform the daily official allergy count for the Midwest.

“The recent rains on Sunday and Monday, followed by warm, sunny, Indian Summer-type temperatures have created the dangerously high mold count,” he said of his unusually high morning count. “Allergy sufferers should stay indoors, keep the windows closed, use their air conditioners, and take their allergy medications.”

The Gottlieb Allergy Count is available to the public, in English, Polish and Spanish, through Twitter; at and at 1-866-4-POLLEN (476-5536) .