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September 12, 1953


Author Affiliations

Walsh, Colo.

JAMA. 1953;153(2):164. doi:10.1001/jama.1953.02940190090018

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To the Editor:—  So-called "dust pneumonia" is a common entity in many areas of the United States where farmers are required to work in air heavily laden with dust particles. It consists of a primary bronchitis and pneumonitis following exposure to dust. In the past, the disease was frequently fatal. It is definitely infectious in character, although mechanical irritation plays a part in the etiology. Chest pain can be caused by exposure to dust. I have seen several patients who have been thoroughly studied for possible accessory factors, and none have been found. The patients were all farmers from the dust bowl area in southeastern Colorado, and each of them had recently begun farming operations that required long and intensive exposure to soil dust. During the period in which these patients were examined, soil dust was not excessive and exposure to dust probably was not any more intense than in

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