Date: 12 Jan 2012

Occupational Lung Disease

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Abstract

The term occupational lung disease encompasses the broad category of airway, lung parenchymal, and pleural disorders that occur due to the inhalation of natural occurring and manmade agents of various chemical and physical compositions. This chapter will describe the classic mineral dust exposures of asbestos, silica, and coal. In addition, examples of immune-mediated occupational lung disease will be reviewed including berylliosis, hard metal disease, and chronic hypersensitivity pneumonitis. In more recent years, airway diseases including occupational asthma have become the leading cause of work-related lung disorders in the industrialized world. While imaging is rarely necessary in occupational asthma, several entities associated with bronchiolitis obliterans will be discussed.