The earliest historians dealing with mining and the hazards of the industry as they affected the health of the miner have recognized a relationship between the various types of dust and the production of disease. They knew of corrosive and noncorrosive types of dust, both of which produced disability, the former causing such serious injury to the lung that death ensued. Because the sickness resembled what is now called tuberculosis, the term "dust phthisis" came into use. Many patients suffering from dust phthisis became emaciated, coughed productively, had fever and died. It has been reported that in the sixteenth century in the mining communities of the Carpathian Mountains many women could be found who had been widowed time after time by miner's phthisis. The exact relationship between the corrosive and noncorrosive dusts was slow in being established. Finally, however, in the early part of the nineteenth century, Alison, professor of
LEMON WS, FELDMAN WH. A COMPARISON OF THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE SPECIFIC NODULE OF SILICOSIS AND OF TUBERCULOSIS. Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1934;53(3):367–378. doi:10.1001/archinte.1934.00160090044004
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.
Create a personal account or sign in to: