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Chronic beryllium disease and sensitization at a beryllium processing facility.
Rosenman KD; Hertzberg VS; Rice C; Reilly MJ; Rossman MD
Proc Am Thorac Soc 2005 May; 2(Abstracts):A816
Factors involved in the development of cellular immunity to beryllium (Be) still need to be determined. A medical screening for Be disease of 574 former Be production workers, which included: a medical and work history, a chest x-ray and blood lymphocyte proliferation testing for Be. A task and job exposure matrix was constructed to examine the association between exposure to Be and the development of Be disease. Over 90% of the cohort completed the questionnaire and 74% completed the blood and x-ray component of the screening. Forty three (7.5%) had definite or probable chronic Be disease (CBD) and another 40 (7.0%) were sensitized to Be (BeS). The prevalence of CBD and BeS in our cohort was greater than that reported in other Be exposed cohorts. Various exposure measures evaluated included duration, first decade worked, last decade worked, cumulative, mean and peak exposure (both soluble and non-soluble forms) of Be. Soluble cumulative and mean exposure levels were lower in individuals with CBD. BeS individuals had shorter duration of exposure, began work later, last worked earlier, and had lower cumulative and peak exposures and lower non-soluble cumulative and mean exposures. A possible explanation for the exposure-response findings of our study relating to an interaction between genetic predisposition and the less permanence of soluble Be in the body is discussed. Both CBD and BeS occurred in former workers at daily working lifetime average mean exposures less than the current allowable Occupational Safety and Health Administration workplace air level standard of 2 ug/m3 and the Department of Energy standard of 0.2 ug/m3.
Beryllium-disease; Sensitization; Occupational-diseases; Diseases; Occupational-exposure; Blood-analysis; X-ray-analysis; Beryllium-compounds; Exposure-levels; Exposure-assessment
Issue of Publication
Proceedings of the American Thoracic Society. 2005 ATS International Conference, May 20-25, 2005, San Diego, California
MI; GA; OH; PA
Michigan State University
Page last reviewed: October 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division