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July 30, 1938


JAMA. 1938;111(5):400-408. doi:10.1001/jama.1938.02790310022008

Within the past few years extensive investigation of the harmful effects of dusts and the comparatively recent recognition of silicosis as a true occupational disease have stimulated the interest of physicians and industrialists toward this important and interesting problem.

Mention of the effects of exposure to excessive amounts of dust has been found in the writings of observers dating back to ancient times. Agricola1 described mining as a dangerous occupation. Paracelsus1 described the chronic lung trouble of miners as "lung consumption," "asthma" and "dyspnea."

The first recorded section of a stonecutter's lung was made in 1649 by Diemerbrock.1 He found in cutting through the lung that there was a definite feeling of resistance to the knife. It felt as though he were cutting through some sandy body. Ramazzini1 was the first to recognize the significance of industrial disease from chemical substances. He made an intensive study

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