General characteristics of the disease


Silicosis is one of occupational diseases. It occurs after prolonged inhalation of dust containing free silica. The most common pulmonary silicosis in people related to the mining, metallurgical and whiteware and engineering industries.

The greatest danger to man is fine dust particle diameter of 2-3 nm. They can easily penetrate into the bronchioles and alveoli, contribute to the development of fibrosis and other disorders. Note that the severity of the symptoms and complications depends on the amount and duration of exposure of silicon compounds. If the concentration of pollutants in the air much higher than normal, while the workers do not use personal protective equipment that is already in 1-3 years they have developed an acute form of silicosis.

Unlike pneumoconiosis, a disease characterized by a favorable course, however, the treatment of silicosis is often complicated by the addition of a tuberculous process and other violations of the normal functioning of the respiratory system. In addition, in the acute form pulmonary fibrosis and other complications continue to progress after cessation of contacts with silica, which also has an impact on the success of treatment.

Symptoms and clinical picture

For a long period of time the disease silicosis does not bother the patient, due to its chronic course. The initial symptoms are scarce:

  • shortness of breath, especially during physical exertion;
  • pain in the chest;
  • rare, dry cough;
  • sputum.

As the progression of the pathological process, symptoms begin to manifest itself more clearly. Shortness of breath is amplified, often it occurs even at rest. To join the main disease associated diseases, such as asthma and chronic bronchitis. Also amplifies the intensity of pain. Cough remains dry, occasionally observed in patients sputum. A large amount of evidence of its occurrence of complications (bronchiectasis, chronic bronchitis).

The appearance of patients with hardly changes, but X-ray examination of the patient and careful examination can detect early signs of emphysema, lung edges mobility reduction and respiratory depression. In some cases, pulmonary silicosis can be identified by breathing hard and dry wheezing.

When expressed forms of the disease cough becomes permanent, released copious sputum, chest pain intensifies, there is a feeling of compression in the thorax, cyanosis. Some patients have hemoptysis and disruption of the cardiovascular system. Subsequent contact with the dust containing quartz, leads to the development of hypertrophic process and causes changes in the mucosa of the upper respiratory tract.

Treatment of silicosis

 Treatment of silicosis

First of all it is necessary to avoid any contact with the silicon dust. Further, patients prescribed inhaled oxygen and breathing exercises. Taking sedatives and antihypertensives in this period it is not recommended. Acute silicosis lung involves holding bronchoalveolar lavage. When obstructive syndrome prescribed bronchodilators.

If tuberculin skin tests are positive, patients must take anti-TB drugs, for example, "INH". When silicotuberculosis when combined disease silicosis and tuberculosis patients prescribed at least 3 anti-TB drugs, including rifampicin.

In severe disease with the development of massive fibrosis, doctors tend to need surgery, which is lung transplantation.

Treatment silicosis necessary because otherwise the disease causes many complications and provokes the appearance of airway related diseases, such as: pneumothorax, pulmonary hypertension, pulmonary emphysema, tuberculosis, fungal pulmonary infection.

Forecasts treatment of silicosis depends on the nature of disease and its stage. Chronic silicosis occurs virtually asymptomatic in the early stages and predictions are almost always favorable. Acute or chronic progressive pulmonary silicosis, conversely, generates numerous complications, lead to the appearance of pulmonary fibrosis tissue and secondary pulmonary hypertension. I would also like to note that for these forms of the disease to manifest adverse effects continue even after a complete cessation of contacts with silica.