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A diagnosis of silicosis is usually made based on chest x-ray or CT appearance. CT is more sensitive than x-ray.

Patients with silicosis will gave an occupational history of silica exposure. A diagnosis of silicosis is usually made based on chest x-ray or CT appearance. CT is more sensitive than x-ray. Helical CT and high-resolution techniques are used. Tissue biopsy may be required for confirmation.

Adjunctive tests include:

Bullet Tuberculin skin testing

Bullet Sputum culture and cytology

Bullet PET scan

Bullet Bronchoscopy

The following investigations are not of definitive diagnostic value but help to monitor disease progression:

Bullet Pulmonary function tests

Bullet Measures of gas exchange by pulse oximetry or preferably indwelling arterial catheter is a highly sensitive measure of lung function impairment

Tests for Antinuclear antibodies and rheumatoid factor are also employed as they may suggest (not diagnostic) a coexisting connective tissue disorder.

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Hi Sincerely seeking some professional advice here. I have been exposed to an incident of inhaling silica dust for some 2 hours at a quartz, granite, marble polishing and grinding foundry [as I was tasked to select marble for our new office renovation]. The dust concentration in the enclosure is strong in my opinion (air is of a dusty white fog with strong smell of the stones). Now I noticed phelgm and mild coughing. Do I need an X-Ray examination for symptoms of silicosis? Also, since silica gets retained would anyone who inhaled silica dust, even if of a one off incident eventually develop symptoms of silicosis? Thank you
Kenneth8301 Friday, October 7, 2011

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