The effects of long-term exposure to asbestos typically don't show up for 10 to 40 years after initial exposure. Asbestosis signs and symptoms can include:
- Shortness of breath
- A persistent, dry cough
- Loss of appetite with weight loss
- Fingertips and toes that appear wider and rounder than normal (clubbing)
- Chest tightness or pain
When to see a doctor
If you have a history of exposure to asbestos and you're experiencing increasing shortness of breath, talk to your doctor about the possibility of asbestosis.
Jan. 02, 2014
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- Roggli VL, et al. Pathology of asbestosis — An update of the diagnostic criteria: Report of the asbestosis committee of the college of American pathologists and pulmonary pathology society. Archives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. 2010;134:462.
- Mescher AL, ed. Junqueira's Basic Histology: Text & Atlas. 13th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2013. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=15. Accessed Aug. 19, 2013.
- What is COPD? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/Copd/Copd_WhatIs.html. Accessed Aug. 19, 2013.
- Rosenow EC (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Sept. 17, 2013.
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