Is silicosis still underdiagnosed?

Main Article Content

Sirawit Stitsmith,MD
Narongpon Dumavibhat, MD, PhD
Charubongse Brohmwitak, MD
Sitthiphon Bunman, PhD
Apinut Jaroonpipatkul, MD
Thanaporn Panomsak
Kawintra Khantharot, MD
Arunee Pholngam, RN


Silicosis, a long-standing occupational lung disease, is still a worldwide health problem. Although many international organizations lead the effort to eliminate this incurable disease, there are newly reported cases continuously. Primary prevention is crucial. If the best resolution is not perfectly implemented, secondary prevention, including early diagnosis of silicosis is essential. However, there is still the problem of underdiagnosis which results in patients continuing working leading to disease progression. The authors present three underdiagnosed cases of employees working in the same company. It is hoped the present study may lead to the improvement of silicosis prevention in the country.


Download data is not yet available.

Article Details

How to Cite
Stitsmith,MD S, Dumavibhat, MD, PhD N, Brohmwitak, MD C, Bunman, PhD S, Jaroonpipatkul, MD A, Panomsak T, Khantharot, MD K, Pholngam, RN A. Is silicosis still underdiagnosed?. BKK Med J [Internet]. 2021 Sep. 29 [cited 2022 Oct. 7];17(2):142. Available from:
Case Report


World Health Organization. Elimination of silicosis. The Global Health Occupational Health Network: GOHNET NEWSLETTER, 2007. (Accessed May 13, 2021, at

The Lancet Respiratory Medicine. The world is falling on silicosis. Lancet Respir Med 2019;7:283.

Trends in global, regional and national incidence of pneumoconiosis caused by different aetiologies: an analysis from the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017. Occup Environ Med 2020;77:407-14.

Souza TP, Watte G, Gusso AM, et al. Silicosis prevalence and risk factors in semi-precious stone mining in Brazil. Am J Ind Med 2017;60:529-36.

Ramakul K. Epidemiological review of silicosis in Thailand. Disease Control Journal 2008;34:109-17.

Chanklom P, Punyaratabandhu M, Patcharatanasan N, et al. Incidence of silicosis among quarry workers in Chonburi Province. Disease Control Journal 2020;46:162-72.

Dumavibhat N, Matsui T, Hoshino E, et al. Radiographic progression of silicosis among Japanese tunnel workers in Kochi. J Occup Health 2013;55:142-8.

Susan S. Goodwin, Stanbury M, Wang M-L, et al. Previously Undetected Silicosis in New Jersey Decedents. Am J Ind Med 2003;44:304-11.

Mazzei MA, Sartorelli P, Bagnacci G, et al. Occupational Lung Diseases: Underreported Diagnosis in Radiological Practice. Semin Ultrasound CT MR 2018;40:36-50.