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Silicosis is a long term disease of the lungs caused by inhaling silica dust usually over a number of years.
It causes tissue swelling and hardening (fibrosis) which means the lungs do not function properly.
Silicosis usually develops between 10-20 years of exposure but can develop as soon as 5-10 years. If there is an intense period of exposure then it can develop within a few months.
The main symptoms are shortness of breath, coughing, weakness and tiredness. It also increases the chances of developing tuberculosis, COPD, chest infections, kidney disease, lung cancer, arthritis and heart failure.
There is no cure for silicosis as the lung damage cannot be reversed. Treatment therefore focuses on relieving symptoms and improving quality of life.
Silica is a natural substance found in certain stone, rock, sand and clay.
The main industries where it is encountered are;
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National Grief Awareness Week 2023 2nd December – 8th December National Grief
Estate Agents: have you got your head around the new Material Information
The HSE have confirmed that they have started targeted visits within the