What is asbestosis disease?
Asbestosis affects the lung walls and sometimes the lining of the heart. It can lead to pulmonary hypertension or heart attack, and death. It is possible to suffer from other asbestos-related conditions at the same time as asbestosis, such as asbestos-related pleural thickening or pleural plaques.
What are the symptoms of asbestosis?
Symptoms of asbestosis include a shortness of breath (dyspnoea), coughing, chest tightness and skin turning a bluish colour (cyanosis). Doctors can test for asbestosis by conducting a respiratory/lung function test and radiological investigations including chest x-rays and CT scans. Because asbestosis is a progressive condition, symptoms will get worse and the need for treatment will increase as people age.
Who is most likely to suffer from asbestosis?
Asbestosis is caused exclusively by exposure to and inhalation of asbestos fibres. Generally, sufferers of asbestosis have a significant history of asbestos exposure, however they may not be diagnosed until decades after their exposure to asbestos. Exposure can occur in people who worked with or in the vicinity of products containing asbestos over a prolonged period or for short but intense periods. It is possible to suffer from other asbestos-related conditions at the same time as asbestosis, such as asbestos-related pleural thickening or pleural plaques.
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