ISSN : 1301-5680
e-ISSN : 2149-8156
Turkish Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery     
Pneumothorax in the cases with silicosis due to denim sandblasting
Hasan Kaynar1, Yener Aydın2, Metin Akgün1, Atila Türkyılmaz2, Atilla Eroğlu2
1Departments of Chest Diseases, Medicine Faculty of Atatürk University, Erzurum, Turkey
2Departments of Thoracic Surgery, Medicine Faculty of Atatürk University, Erzurum, Turkey
DOI : 10.5606/tgkdc.dergisi.2012.055
Background: This study aims to report secondary spontaneous pneumothorax cases, presenting in acute and accelerated forms of silicosis associated with working in sandblasting jobs.

Methods: The study included seven male patients (mean age 20.4 years; range 17 to 23 years) with secondary spontaneous pneumothorax caused by silicosis, who worked in small workplaces producing sandblasted jeans within the past five years. In all cases, pneumothorax was diagnosed by posteroanterior chest X-ray evaluation.

Results: The mean duration of exposure to silica particles was 34.4 months (range 24-48 months). In the first case, the diagnosis of silicosis was confirmed with an open lung biopsy, whereas in other patients, diagnosis was established by historical, clinical, and radiological evaluations. All of the patients had various degrees of dyspnea and chest pain. Pneumothorax was seen on the right side in three cases and on the left side in two cases, while bilateral pneumothorax was seen in two cases. Tube thoracostomy was performed in all patients, while pleurodesis with tetracycline was performed in two patients. None of the patients developed recurrent pneumothorax.

Conclusion: Our study showed an increased incidence of secondary pneumothorax in acute and accelerated forms of silicosis due to denim sandblasting. Pneumothorax due to silicosis may cause serious morbidity and mortality. The most important steps to cope with silicosis and pneumothorax is to take preventive precautions, as the disease is incurable.

Keywords : Denim sandblasting; pneumothorax; silicosis
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