Healthy Lungs Healthy human lung American Assoc. of Respiratory Care
Our Environment Our lungs are susceptible to damage caused by inhaled toxic materials and irritants because the surface area of our lungs exposed to air is so large and bodys need for oxygen so great.
Did you know? Our lungs have the greatest exposure to air of any body part. Surface area of 300 square feet at rest (skin only 20 square feet) Up to 1000 square feet during a deep breath 20x50ft. pool 300sq.ft.dingy
Our Lungs Link to life -giving oxygen supply to our body Every cell in our body needs a constant supply of oxygen Breathe 6 litres of air a minute at rest Increases to 75 litres per minute with heavy exercise 8 hr work day/moderate activity - breathe as much as 300 cubic feet
Respiratory system Respiratory system: Natural mechanisms to protect lungs against airborne hazards Prevents all but the smallest respirable particles from reaching the alveoli Working hard sometimes bypass part of filtering system by breathing through mouth
Occupational Lung Hazards Lung hazards come in many forms
Agriculture Workers exposed to variety of environmental hazards- potentially harmful to health & well-being Considered one of most hazardous occupations Organic dusts & toxic gases constitute some of: –Most common & potentially disabling hazards –Can affect all parts of respiratory system-nose to deepest parts of lungs---causing increased rates of respiratory diseases Changing patterns of agriculture have paradoxically contributed to both improved working conditions and increased exposure to respiratory hazards.
Respiratory Diseases in Agriculture Lung cancer Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary (Lung) Disease- emphysema, bronchitis Organic Dust Toxic Syndrome (ODTS)- Common lung illness Farmers Lung-allergic reaction
Exposure to hazards in agriculture: –Linked to excessive coughing & congestion in 20 - 90 % of farm workers & families. –Symptoms of chronic bronchitis - observed in as many as 50% of swine confinement workers & grain handlers. –Chronic (long term) diseases like bronchitis and emphysema develop due to repeated irritation. Organic Dust Toxic Syndrome (ODTS): – common respiratory illness (short term) that resembles Farmers Lung- is often mistaken for the flu. Farmer's Lung: (less common than ODTS) –An allergic reaction caused by inhaling dust from moldy hay, straw, and grain. Dairy and grain farmers are the most common victims. Farmers Lung can be acute and develop to a chronic condition. Respiratory Diseases in Agriculture
Times when moldy crops are handled indoors are the most dangerous. –For those who are susceptible, repeated exposure damages lung tissue, causing shortness of breath and a growing inability to perform strenuous work. Victims eventually may find it a struggle even to get out of a chair. Smoking has the multiplier effect on the lungs with other irritants that can lead to the development of lung cancer. Sometimes, substances may affect our lungs for some time before signs of disease are noticed. This is another reason farmers need to be aware of the potentially harmful substances found on the farm. Respiratory Diseases in Agriculture
Occupational asthmaAsphyxiation (gas/fumes in lungs)
Respiratory Disease in Agriculture Some illnesses are chronic. The disease lasts for a long time or lifetime. Eg. Occupational asthma in grain workers. Occupational asthma -one study in Sask. found that 27% of farmers presented with a wheeze (marker for asthma) compared to 10 % of non-farmers -May develop when become sensitized to allergens such as grain dust, mold, storage mites or farm chemicals. -Usually new but can occur in people who already have had asthma. Some respiratory diseases are acute. When a person breathes a harmful substance and becomes ill, they either recover completely or die, such as after breathing in silo gas. Asphyxiation- overcome by fumes/ gases that replace oxygen content.
Respiratory Illnesses and Syndromes Agricultural respiratory conditions tend to have an overlapping spectrum. This is a diagram reflecting respiratory disease in swine confinement workers. (Adapted from Von Essen and Donham.
Respiratory Illnesses & Syndromes Respiratory symptoms from agricultural exposures are often nonspecific & mistaken for common viral or bacterial respiratory infections. A careful occupational history is important to get the proper diagnosis. Soluble gases such as ammonia are normally absorbed into mucous membranes of the upper airways but when they are absorbed onto dust particles, they can penetrate further into the lower respiratory tract than just the gases alone. Since gases & dusts usually occur together in agricultural environments, it is hard to tell the adverse effects apart.
Lung Facts One in five Canadians (six million) have a breathing problem More than 2.8 million Canadians have asthma: – 330,000 cases are Occupational Asthma (OA) (Many of these cases are directly related to workers in Swine and Poultry confinement buildings) –Asthma is #1 reason for absence from work/school
Lung Facts Lung disorders are the number one cause of short term disability >750,000 Canadians have Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) –4 th leading cause of death (2004) –13% of all hospitalizations –Only half diagnosed & treated Decreased quality of life for patients with COPD High health service resource use & economic burden to society
Prevention Engineering controls Ventilation: mechanical recommended- better control Methods of controlling dust generation such as mist, oil to feed, on animals, wet cleaning of surfaces Use of leak proof manure storage outdoors Monitoring of gas concentrations Personal protective respiratory devices (NIOSH approved)- additional safeguards Respiratory surveillance Baseline lung function test and chest x-ray Early recognition of exposure sources and symptoms
Respiratory Surveillance Employment setting where workers use or are potentially exposed to lung hazards should have medical surveillance Reduce human & economic toll Lung disease- most significant due to severity Significant causes of morbidity, disability, early retirement & death Preventable once causes recognized HIGH PRIORITY: Recognition of Occupational Lung Disease hazards & prevention of exposure
Monitoring your Lung Health A pulmonary (lung) function test involves breathing into a spirometer. This simple, painless test provides data on lung volume and ability to breathe.
Annual Lung Function Tests (Who should ) Grain Industry Workers Dairy farmers Workers in livestock confinement buildings Workers who smoke People with history of bronchitis, asthma or frequent lung infections
THE LUNG ASSOCIATION, Manitoba OCCUPATIONAL LUNG HEALTH Monitoring Program Perform lung health screening Prevention & early detection On-site or office appointments Medical surveillance & reports Lung health trending Retention of health records for 40 years The Lung Association of Manitoba offers the only mobile lung monitoring program in Manitoba.
Occupational Lung Health Monitoring Questionnaires Chest x-rays Lung function tests (spirometry) Fitness to wear respirator testing
THE LUNG ASSOCIATION, Manitoba THE SANATORIUM BOARD -1904 (Tuberculosis Control) THE LUNG ASSOCIATION, MANITOBA (Non-profit charitable division of The Sanatorium Board established in1975 to focus on all respiratory disorders and disease in MB) MISSION: To improve lung health of Manitobans
For more information contact: Winnipeg: (204) 774-5501 Brandon: (204) 725-4230 Toll free:1-888-566-5864 firstname.lastname@example.org WEBSITE: www.mb.lung.ca