PURPOSE: This study was performed in order to evaluate the results of a screening in insulation workers after a five years follow up.
METHODS: PA chest films of a group of 105 life long (28.5 ± 6.6 years) insulation workers of average age 52.3 ± 8 yrs, non smokers, were reviewed by three “B” readers. These workers were positive for asbestosis at a follow-up visit after five years from the first examination (ILO category 1/0 or greater). Also a group of 85 non smokers workers with no change in chest-ray was reviewed. All workers had forced vital capacity (FVC) measurement at both the initial screening and the follow-up.
RESULTS: FVC (as %predicted) was decreased in the group that became positive radiographically (88.8% vs 73.3%, p<0.001), but it was found unchanged in the group that remained radiographically negative (86,6% vs 83.3%, p<0.096). Between the two groups there was a significant difference at the follow-up in FVC %predicted (83.3% vs 73.3%, p<0.001) and RV/TGV (53,8% vs 46.2%, p<0.001), but there was no difference in TGV% predicted (73.2% vs 79.3%, p<0.7).
CONCLUSION: It is concluded that parenchymal disease defined by ILO criteria is associated with reduced FVC values but not TGV values. Also it is concluded that workers which may be radiographic positive (ILO 1/0 or greater at later time) is easy to be identified by a lower FVC value.
CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: It has to be noticed that workers exposed to a possible occupational work has to be under a strict medical surveillance.
DISCLOSURE: George Tatsis, None.