NEW EXPOSURES
June 27, 2017

Lung disease associated with occupational exposure is not new. This area continues to see its share of lung disease associated with coal dust exposure, along with silica and asbestosis related lung disease. What I am impressed with is the new and different exposures causing lung disease, some of which are related to advancing technology. There are even new ways of getting exposed to some of the older, well-known dusts. Silica immediately comes to mind. Brick making was the usual way of getting exposed to silica. Now the use of sand blasting denim material is causing significant disease, as is the fracking industry, which instills pressurized sand and other compounds into its wells exposing the operators of the equipment to significant amounts of silica dust. The manufacturing of the liquid crystal display screens that we all know and love exposes workers to a combination of iridium and tin, which causes interstitial fibrosis. Something seemingly as simple as the microwave popcorn industry is not immune from causing industrial related lung disease. A flavoring compound used in production has been shown to cause significant lung damage in a number of workers. Firemen and first responders are exposed to potential lung disease. The firemen and rescue workers from the World Trade Center attack developed significant and irreversible lung injury. Data on firemen, alone, suggests that many will develop lung function impairment as part of their dangerous but necessary duties. There are many more instances which require special expertise in occupational medicine to evaluate.

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George M. Zlupko, MD, FCCP

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Address:
800 Chestnut Ave
Altoona, PA 16601

Phone:
814.946.2845

Fax:
814.946.1273

Email:
SherriS@altoonalungspecialists.com

Monday through Friday
8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Each of our physicians has office hours several days per week for patient visits. For an appointment, please call 814.946.2845 and our staff will schedule the next available day and time.

If you are not able to keep a scheduled appointment, please advise our office as soon as possible in order to provide another patient this time to meet with the physician and, if necessary, receive treatment.

If you have an emergency, please call 911.

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