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Coal dust in lungs

Coal dust in lungs

M108/0538

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Credit

CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Coal dust in lungs. Gross clinical specimen of coal dust (black) in lungs (yellow). The condition is termed anthracosis. This is a dust inhalation disorder (pnemoconiosis) where the dust is inhaled in coal mines. The dust particles are less than 0.005 millimetres in diameter, and so penetrate deep into the lungs. They eventually cause breathlessness as the healthy tissue degenerates into fibrous masses. The other two frequent types of industrial particulate exposure are due to work with silica and asbestos. Treatment is pallative (reducing the impact of the symptoms) and there is no cure.

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