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Occupational-Related Lung Disease

Texas Pulmonary Institute -  - Pulmonary Medicine

Texas Pulmonary Institute

Pulmonary Medicine & Critical Care Medicine located in Port Arthur, TX

Your work environment can have a significant impact on the health and function of your lungs. At Texas Pulmonary Institute in Port Arthur, Texas, Roozbeh Sharif, MD, and the medical team have extensive experience in diagnosing and treating occupational-related lung diseases like work-related asthma, silicosis, and asbestosis. They offer on-site diagnostic testing and tailor a treatment plan to help you manage your symptoms in the long term. To schedule an evaluation for occupational-related lung disease, call Texas Pulmonary Institute or book a consultation online today.


Occupational-Related Lung Disease Q&A

What is occupational-related lung disease?

Occupational lung diseases are conditions that people who regularly work around chemicals or other irritants can develop over time. These diseases occur because workers breathe the irritants into their lungs, which absorb the substances rather than allowing them to be expelled out.

Some common types of occupational-related lung diseases include:

Work-related asthma

People who regularly work around gases, vapors, and dusts are at greater risk for developing work-related asthma that causes chronic wheezing and coughing. Asthma is common among those working in farming, food processing, textiles, and manufacturing.


Asbestosis results when you breathe asbestos fibers into your lungs. These fibers stiffen and scar lung tissue and may also cause cancer. Asbestos is a flexible, fire-resistant material used in insulation, and asbestosis is common among construction workers.


Silicosis is a disease that results from breathing in crystalline silica, a mineral in glass, pottery, and ceramics. People who work in mines and blasting areas and inhale silica dust can develop lung scarring and are at increased risk for other types of lung infections and diseases.

Black lung disease (coal miner’s pneumoconiosis)

Black lung disease is common among coal miners who inhale coal dust. The dust causes persistent lung inflammation and scarring, leading to chronic shortness of breath and permanent lung damage.

Brown lung disease (byssinosis)

Brown lung disease develops when workers breathe in dust from cotton, flax, and hemp processing facilities. The dust can cause shortness of breath and chest tightness in textile workers.

How is occupational-related lung disease diagnosed?

If you have chronic coughing, shortness of breath, and other signs of an occupational lung disease, the team at Texas Pulmonary Institute can identify the underlying cause.

They offer several in-office diagnostic testing technologies to evaluate your lung health and function. These tests include:

  • Chest X-rays
  • Bloodwork
  • Computed tomography (CT) scan
  • Pulmonary function tests
  • Bronchoscopy

Based on the results of your testing, the team can design a treatment plan that helps improve your breathing and protect your long-term lung health.

How is occupational-related lung disease treated?

Most occupational-related lung diseases aren’t curable, but with ongoing care, you can learn to manage your symptoms and lead a physically active life.

The treatment plans available at Texas Pulmonary Institute focus on preventing additional exposure to hazardous irritants and reducing your risk for lung scarring. The team also helps you manage your symptoms with medications and oxygen therapy.

Your individual treatment plan for occupational lung disease depends on your age, the severity of your symptoms, and the extent and type of disease you have.

If you have a chronic cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of an occupational-related lung disease, schedule a diagnostic evaluation online or by calling Texas Pulmonary Institute today.