Today's News / Health

People exposed to WTC toxic fumes showing improvement in lung function

December 10, 2012
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+

lungsNew health research gives hope to workers and residents exposed to toxic dust and fumes after the collapse of the World Trade Center towers on 9/11.

A study finds that some of those people have shown gradual improvement in lung function, indicating that airway injury is reversible in at least some cases.

Researchers analyzed the results of repeated lung function tests in more than 900 people exposed to the WTC site during or after the terrorist attacks. At the first evaluation, the patients had a "restrictive" pattern of lung-function abnormalities and approximately 86 percent had breathing-related symptoms.

The patients had an average of three lung function tests performed up to six years apart. Two measures of the ability to exhale air from the lungs -- forced vital capacity and forced expiratory volume in one second -- increased by an average of 1 percent or more per year, Dr. Joan Reibman, of the New York University School of Medicine, and colleagues found.

People with different types of exposure had different patterns of improvement in lung function. People who worked near the World Trade Center had the least improvement, while rescue and recovery workers had greater improvement, according to a journal news release.

Despite the improvement, lung function remained below normal for all groups of patients. The study also found that patients who were heavy smokers had no long-term improvement in lung function.

The findings reinforce the importance of continued treatment for patients with airway injury, the researchers said. Similar long-term evaluation and follow-up may be needed for people with such injury caused by other environmental disasters, they added.

The study was published in the October issue of the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to ISHN.

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

Scenes from the World of Safety

Sights, signs & symbols from the National Safety Congress & Expo held in San Diego, CA, September 15-18

11/4/14 2:00 pm EST

Eye Injuries: You rarely see them coming. Practical Solutions for reducing injuries to the eye.

The 3M Eye Injury Reduction webinar will provide an examination of how to help solve eye injuries in the workplace. This issue continues to challenge virtually every industry, and the solution is often times multifaceted. 3M will share some new tools and approaches to help you in solving this issue.

ISHN Magazine

ISHN1014_cover.jpg

2014 October

This issue features articles about PPE safety and OSHA standards

Table Of Contents Subscribe

THE ISHN STORE

M:\General Shared\__AEC Store Katie Z\AEC Store\Images\ISHN\safetyfourth.jpg
Safety Engineering, 4th Edition

A practical, solutions-driven reference, Safety Engineering, 4th edition, has been completely revised and updated to reflect many of today’s issues in safety.

More Products

For Distributors Only - SEPTEMBER 2014

ISHN FDO SEPTEMBER 2014For Distributors Only is ISHN's niche brand standard-sized magazine supplement aimed at an audience of 2,000 U.S. distributors that sell safety products. Circulation only goes to distributors. CHECK OUT THE SEPTEMBER 2014 ISSUE OF FDO HERE

STAY CONNECTED

Facebook logo Twitter YouTubeLinkedIn Google + icon

ishn infographics

2012 US workplace deathsCheck out ISHN's new Infographic page! Learn more about worker safety through these interactive images. CLICK HERE to view the page.