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Home > Personal Injury > Industrial Diseases > Pneumoconiosis diseases > Pneumoconiosis causes, diagnosis, treatment

Pneumoconiosis causes, diagnosis, treatment

Dealing with pneumoconiosis diseases

Pneumoconiosis is the term applied to a number of lung-related diseases that cause sufferers to experience a range of debilitating conditions.

Causes of pneumoconiosis diseases

Pneumoconiosis diseases result from the inhalation of a variety of materials that are used or created in a wide range of jobs and environments.

Asbestos, beryllium, vegetable fibres such as flax, hemp, cotton dust or sisal, coal dust, graphite, manmade carbon, silica dust, ammonia, have all been linked to the onset of a pneumoconiosis disease.

Non-organic substances such as sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, chloride and acid, have also been linked to the onset of a pneumoconiosis disease, though they typically contribute to a build up of fluid in the lungs rather than fibrous scar tissue on the lung wall.

Spores from moulds of hay, malt, mushrooms and barley, if exposure occurs over an extended period of time, can cause a severe allergic reaction in the sufferer, resulting in lung disease. Dust from cotton, flax or hemp used in the textile industry, cause histamines to be released, causing difficulty breathing due to the narrowing of the air passages.

Many of these materials known to cause these diseases are still widely used in a variety of workplaces where workers are at risk of exposure and developing a notifiable disease. These include:

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Diagnosing pneumoconiosis diseases

If you suspect you may be suffering from a pneumoconiosis disease, you should visit your GP and explain that you believe your work history may have caused you to be exposed to the dust from a material known to cause a pneumoconiosis disease in some cases.

If your GP agrees that you may be suffering from a notifiable disease, he may recommend you for lung function and CXR tests, as well as a CT scan. The results of these tests will diagnose and evaluate whether there is a build up of any material in your lungs, and if so, the extent of your damage. Confirmation of a pneumoconiosis disease would allow you to be referred to a specialist for further tests and advice.

Several of the symptoms presented by sufferers are common to many, if not all, of these diseases so it is important to seek expert medical treatment if you suspect you may have a pneumoconiosis disease.

Common symptoms include:

However, some types of pneumoconiosis diseases demonstrate specific, individual symptoms, which your doctor will be able to identify.

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Preventing pneumoconiosis diseases

Some industries and working environments cannot be entirely made free of these hazardous substances, but many common sense preventative measures can be taken to ensure that exposure by workers is kept to an absolute minimum.

There are several sections of legislation which are in place to provide employers with guidance on protecting their workers, and in the event that workers do develop a pneumoconiosis disease because of the negligence of their employer, that legislation will allow them to bring a claim for industrial disease compensation.

The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH), and the Health and Safety Commission Approved Codes of Practice are two such sections of the legislation, and our personal injury lawyers are specialists in winning compensation for these types of claims.

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Treatments for pneumoconiosis diseases

Whilst there are some treatments for the individual diseases, the most important factor is to stop the exposure to the organic or non-organic dust that has caused the disease, either by providing adequate ventilation, or by removing the sufferer from the working environment.

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Making a personal injury compensation claim for pneumoconiosis

Strict time limits apply to making a claim for any type of personal injury, so please contact an experienced solicitor as soon as you think you may have a claim for compensation.

Please visit our section on information and advice for more details on making a personal injury compensation claim.

Whether your pneumoconiosis disease was caused by exposure at work or in a public place, you may still be entitled to make a claim for personal injury compensation. Providing it can be proven that your injury was caused by your exposure to a harmful substance and the person or company who allowed you to be exposed to the chemical was negligent, then your claim for compensation should be valid.

Clear Answers’ lawyers will be able to advise you whether you have a valid claim for compensation. Our specialist industrial disease lawyers are experts in all personal injury matters and will be happy to talk you through the process of making a claim in plain English and answer any questions or queries you may have.

Telephone us now on 0800 783 9019 or complete one of our online compensation claim forms one of our representatives will contact you as soon as possible.

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