Long-term follow-up of beryllium sensitized workers from a single employerReport as inadecuate

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BMC Public Health

, 10:5

First Online: 04 January 2010Received: 29 June 2009Accepted: 04 January 2010DOI: 10.1186-1471-2458-10-5

Cite this article as: Duggal, M., Deubner, D.C., Curtis, A.M. et al. BMC Public Health 2010 10: 5. doi:10.1186-1471-2458-10-5


BackgroundUp to 12% of beryllium-exposed American workers would test positive on beryllium lymphocyte proliferation test BeLPT screening, but the implications of sensitization remain uncertain.

MethodsSeventy two current and former employees of a beryllium manufacturer, including 22 with pathologic changes of chronic beryllium disease CBD, and 50 without, with a confirmed positive test were followed-up for 7.4 +-3.1 years.

ResultsBeyond predicted effects of aging, flow rates and lung volumes changed little from baseline, while DLCO dropped 17.4% of predicted on average. Despite this group decline, only 8 subjects 11.1% demonstrated physiologic or radiologic abnormalities typical of CBD. Other than baseline status, no clinical or laboratory feature distinguished those who clinically manifested CBD at follow-up from those who did not.

ConclusionsThe clinical outlook remains favorable for beryllium-sensitized individuals over the first 5-12 years. However, declines in DLCO may presage further and more serious clinical manifestations in the future. These conclusions are tempered by the possibility of selection bias and other study limitations.

Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article doi:10.1186-1471-2458-10-5 contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Author: Mona Duggal - David C Deubner - Anne M Curtis - Mark R Cullen

Source: https://link.springer.com/


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