Related lung diseases are most commonly seen in

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related lung diseases are most commonly seen in people who have had prolonged contact with asbestos at work. Asbestosis – a Chronic Inflammatory Condition When asbestos fibres are inhaled, many are removed by the body’s natural defences against intruders. Some fibres may escape this process, however, and these may migrate out of the airways and become lodged within the tissues of the lung. The needle-shaped fibres of blue and brown asbestos are most likely to be trapped, while the curly, flexible fibres of white asbestos are more likely to be removed. Crocidolite and amosite are therefore the most hazardous types of asbestos. The trapped fibres cause irritation of the surrounding lung tissue, which stimulates the body to produce excessive amounts of thickened, fibrous tissue in a reaction called ‘fibrosis’. The tiny air sacs in the lungs are gradually replaced by this fibrotic tissue, and breathing becomes increasingly difficult as a result. This is a slow process; decades may pass between the initial exposure to asbestos and the first symptoms of illness. Benign Pleural Disease
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The pleura is a membrane, or mesothelium, that covers the outside of the lungs and the inside of the chest wall. Asbestos exposure can cause thickening of the pleura, leading to breathlessness and pain, or pleurisy (inflammation and fibrosis of the pleura).
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