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Silicosis surveillance - Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, and Wisconsin, 1987-1990.
Reilly MJ; Rosenman KD; Watt FC; Stanbury MJ; Valiante DJ; Helmus LE; Migliozzi AA; Anderson HA; Hanrahan L; Jajosky RA; Musgrave KJ; Castellan RM; Ordin DL
MMWR Surveill Summ 1993 Nov; 42(SS-05):23-28
As part of the Sentinel Event Notification System for Occupational Risks (SENSOR) Program, silicosis surveillance was implemented in Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio and Wisconsin. Case ascertainment for this study, which covered the years 1987 through 1990, mainly relied on physician case reporting. Such case reporting did not become mandatory in the states studied until as late as 1990, while case reporting in Wisconsin was still voluntary at the time of the study. Means of augmenting physician reports, employed by some states, included the studying of death certificates, hospital discharge data, and workers compensation records, and investigating workplaces. Cases were confirmed by a history of occupational exposure to silica (14808607) and a chest radiograph diagnosed by a NIOSH certified physician. There were 430 cases confirmed. The average duration of exposure for all confirmed cases was 26 years. Although 60% of the persons affected by silicosis worked in primary metal industries, stone, clay, glass, and concrete were the predominate industries in New Jersey. In 56% of the Michigan workplaces studied, silica levels exceeded the legally permissible level. SENSOR silicosis surveillance identified multiple complementary sources for case ascertainment. Mandated case reporting by physicians appeared to be the most efficient method for identifying silicosis cases. The surveillance data served to identify lesser known occupations which present a silicosis danger, such as the dental supplies industry. The authors conclude that surveillance data can help authorities identify ongoing hazardous exposures. Workplace follow up is important and should encourage such preventive practices as material substitution. prevention of silicosis will require improved surveillance in all 50 states.
NIOSH-Author; Surveillance-programs; Occupational-diseases; Occupational-exposure; Epidemiology; Lung-disease; Silica-dusts; Humans; Occupational-respiratory-disease
Issue of Publication
Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report: Surveillance Summaries
MI; NJ; OH; WI
New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services
Page last reviewed: February 25, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division