A recent article on News.com.au highlighted the plight of stonemason Cameron Harper who is warning Australia’s tradies about the risks of not wearing the appropriate protection.
The 27 year old mason coughs and wheezes regularly as he speaks and loses his breath after being diagnosed with silicosis.
Sadly there is not enough awareness about Silicosis, what it is and how it is caused.
Silicosis is a progressive, irreversible lung disease which is caused by the prolonged exposure to respirable crystalline silica or quartz dust.
Silicosis causes scarring of lungs leading to progressive respiratory impairment. Some people who suffer from the disease need a lung transplant and in severe cases it can lead to death.
While global silicosis figures are dropping, alarmingly Australian medical experts say there’s a spike in new cases of life-threatening silicosis in Australia.
This spike has been attributed to occupational exposures to so-called engineered or artificial stone products, the kind often used for kitchen benchtops.