Beryllium exposure and pulmonary function: a cross sectional study of beryllium workers.
Kriebel-D; Sprince-NL; Eisen-EA; Greaves-IA; Feldman-HA; Greene-RE
Br J Ind Med 1988 Mar; 45(3):167-173
A possible association between long term beryllium (7440417) exposure and decreasing pulmonary function and interstitial changes observed on chest radiographs was examined using medical monitoring data and historical industrial hygiene survey reports available at a large beryllium extraction and manufacturing facility. The group studied consisted of 297 white males (average age 43 years) who had worked an average of 17 years at the facility; approximately half were current smokers. The majority of chest radiographs were normal with only 28 subjects showing small or irregular opacities. Exposure response modeling showed that both forced vital capacity and forced expiratory volume in 1 second were strongly associated with exposures in the distant past (more than 20 years before the survey) and weakly associated with recent exposures. A positive association was observed between alveolar/arterial oxygen gradient and recent exposure but not with past exposures. A weak association between radiographic abnormalities and recent exposure was also observed. The authors conclude that the findings support the theory that exposure to beryllium has both long and short term effects on lung parenchyma and the airways.
NIOSH-Publication; NIOSH-Grant; Lung-disorders; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Metal-workers; Long-term-study; Chronic-exposure; Beryllium-compounds
Environmental Sci & Physiology Harvard School of Public Hlth 665 Huntington Ave Boston, Mass 02115
British Journal of Industrial Medicine
Harvard University, Boston, Massachusetts