Professor Dan Chambers was alarmed when he began seeing new cases of silicosis in dozens of young men in Queensland in 2018.
The cases triggered a nationwide audit of the manufacturing stone industry, revealing that hundreds of workers have contracted the potentially fatal disease as a result of workplace safety breaches. The occupational lung condition is now said to be at epidemic levels in Australia.
Knowing that many more young men would need help, Professor Chambers, Thoracic Transplant Physician at Prince Charles Hospital, Brisbane, and his colleagues began investigating an established technique – lung lavage – as a potential treatment.
In this episode we talk to Professor Chambers about the procedure that has already been used to effectively treat six men with early stage silicosis and the plans to roll the program out across other states.
The research has been funded by a $500,000 grant from the Common Good movement, an initiative of the Prince Charles Hospital. To find out more and or to contribute, click here.