Mineral fiber content of lung tissue in patients with environmental exposures: household contacts vs. building occupants.
Analysis of tissue mineral fiber content in patients with environmental exposures has seldom been reported in the past. Our studies of six household contacts of asbestos workers indicate that these individuals often have pulmonary asbestos concentrations similar to some occupationally exposed individuals. In contrast, our studies of four occupants of buildings with asbestos-containing materials indicate that these individuals often have pulmonary asbestos burdens indistinguishable from the general nonoccupationally exposed population. However, one such building occupant exposed for many years and who later developed pleural mesothelioma was studied in detail, and it was concluded that her exposure as a teacher's aide in a school building containing acoustical plaster was the likely cause of her mesothelioma.
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