Pneumoconiosis is a chronic lung disease, which is caused by industrial dust. Dust settles in the bronchi and lungs, causing growth of connective tissue, mechanical or chemical injury of tissues. This is a professional disease, which most often affects miners, and persons who are engaged in engineering, metal, cement, glass, textiles, for a long time, working in a contaminated environment.
- Cough with phlegm.
- Bronchitis. Shortness of breath.
- Heart failure.
There are different types of pneumoconiosis (depending on the physico-chemical characteristics of the respirable dust). The miners are constantly inhaling coal dust, sick from anthracosis (their lungs contain black coal dust) and metal industry workers (especially grinders) sick from siderosis. Their light takes on the color of rust. Very dangerous diseases are silicosis and pneumoconiosis, developing among people working in ceramic, glass and porcelain industry (their lungs are grey). Other types of pneumoconiosis – asbestosis, tabacosis (for workers in the tobacco industry), diseases, which are caused by lime, flour, wood dust.
There is no single method of treatment, the use of which would completely cure the patient. Medications, that thinning mucus, are appointed. Furthermore, if the disease is accompanied by heart failure, it must be treated further. Patients suffering from pneumoconiosis should stay in the fresh air as often as possible. Very often, they have to change jobs, and (or) profession because of illness.
Only those people, who have not impeded nasal breathing, can perform the work, during which the inhalation of dust of various kinds is inevitably. In addition, they should wear a mask that protects the respiratory tract.
When there are first symptoms of pneumoconiosis, for example, a constant cough with sputum or increasing shortness of breath, you should seek medical attention.
First of all, the doctor will do an x-ray of the lungs to detect linear or nodular changes. If the patient suffers from shortness of breath, the doctor also examines the heart.
Course of the disease
Dust is primarily irritating bronchi. Then the dust particles fall out of the alveoli in the lung lymph vessels. Alveoli of the lungs may stick together, causing purulent inflammation of the mucous membrane. Furthermore, if the dust remains reactivity, chronic inflammation begins in these areas. Other symptoms – severe shortness of breath, emphysema and shortness of heart function.
Pneumoconiosis is a dangerous disease. Patients reduced performance, physical activity, resistance to TB, moreover, in certain types of lung cancer pneumoconiosis probability increases.
It is important to follow the instructions on safety, wearing special clothing and masks, which protects the respiratory tract.