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1207 Silicosis, especially complicated, shows significant lung volumes and airflows impairment compared to interstitial lung diseases of non-occupational aetiology
  1. S Perečinský,
  2. Z Mačudová,
  3. Ľ Legáth
  1. Department of Occupational Medicine and Clinical Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, P. J. Šafárik University and L. Pasteur University Hospital Introduction, Košice, Slovakia


Introduction Silicosis belongs to the interstitial lung diseases, a heterogeneous group of many diseases of a different aetiology. Common symptom of all these diseases is dyspnoea. Lung function tests usually show restrictive defect with decreased diffusion capacity (DLCO). However, the heterogeneity of these diseases brings a question, if silicosis, a typically occupational disease, differs from other non-occupational interstitial diseases in the pathogenesis of symptoms and lung function impairment. The aim of study was comparison of lung functions in patients with silicosis and non-occupational interstitial lung diseases.

Methods In total, 30 patients with simple silicosis, 32 patients with complicated silicosis and 30 patients with non-occupational interstitial lung diseases underwent spirometry, bodypletysmography and DLCO examination. We compared vital capacity (VC), forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1), FEV1/VC ratio (Tiffeneau index), total lung capacity (TLC), residual volume (RV) and DLCO between these 3 groups of patients.

Results Vital capacity was more decreased in silicosis, both simple and complicated compared to the non-occupational interstitial lung diseases (p<0.001). However, TLC was the highest in complicated silicosis because of high residual volume which did not change significantly in non-occupational interstitial lung diseases (p<0.001). In the group of patients with silicosis, the decrease of airflows has been shown. The highest decrease of DLCO occurred in patients with non-occupational interstitial lung diseases (63%) in comparison to simple (p<0.001) and complicated (p<0.01) silicosis. Only 10% of patients with non-occupational interstitial lung diseases had normal DLCO compared to 75% in simple silicosis and 45% in complicated silicosis.

Discussion Study confirmed differences in the pathogenesis of symptoms in silicosis and patients with non-occupational interstitial lung diseases. Apparently, in the case of simple silicosis, the symptoms are the result of bronchial obstruction without severe lung parenchyma destruction. In the case of non-occupational interstitial lung diseases, a predominant sing was decreased DLCO as a result of alveolocapillary membrane impairment without significant changes in lung volumes and airflows. However, complicated silicosis was characterised by significant volumes and airflows impairment and lung hyperinflation with decreasing DLCO.

  • silicosis
  • interstitial lung diseases
  • lung functions

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