Original article

Scand J Work Environ Health 1978;4(4):275-283    pdf


Radiographic and physiological findings in patients with asbestosis.

by Zitting A, Huuskonen MS, Alanko K, Mattsson T

Radiographic and respiratory functional findings are reported for a series of 133 Finnish patients with asbestosis. Of these patients, 65 (49%) were found to have radiographically mild diffuse pulmonary fibrosis (profusion 0/1, 1/0 or 1/1), 48 (36%) moderate fibrosis (1/2, 2/1 or 2/2) and 20 (15%) diffuse fibrosis in an advanced stage (2/3 or more). The type of fibrosis was mostly irregular (110 = 83%). Fibrosis was typically the most advanced in the lower zones of the lungs. Of the 133 patients, 88 (66%) showed pleural changes and 78 (59%) pleural calcifications. The more severe the fibrosis, as seen in the radiographs, the greater the decrease in vital capacity (VC) and expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1.0). Transfer factor was generally impaired only in advanced cases of asbestosis (fibrosis 2/3 or more). In general, obstruction was not observed in this series. Pleural changes seemed to decrease VC and FEV1.0 when the fibrosis was mild (0/1, 1/0 or 1/1). They had no effect on diffusion capacity (TLco).