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J Environ Sci Health A Tox Hazard Subst Environ Eng. 2014;49(13):1453-61. doi: 10.1080/10934529.2014.937157.

Chronic lung disease and detection of pulmonary artery dilatation in high resolution computerized tomography of chest in chronic arsenic exposure.

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a Institute of Pulmocare & Research , Kolkata , India.


Lung affection in chronic arsenicosis developing from chronic ingestion of arsenic contaminated groundwater has been known but little is known on its effect on pulmonary arterial system. A cross sectional study was carried out at two geographically similar areas and demographically similar populations with or without evidence of chronic arsenic exposure in West Bengal, India. The willing participants in both the groups with chronic respiratory symptoms were evaluated with High Resolution Computerized Tomography (HRCT) of Chest. Evaluation of High Resolution Computerized Tomography of chest followed clinical assessment of lung disease in194 and 196 subjects from the arsenic exposed and unexposed people; the former had a higher prevalence of cough OR(Odds Ratio) 3.23 (95% CI(Confidence Interval): 1.72-6.07) and shortness of breath OR1.76 (95% CI: 0.84-3.71), respectively. The arsenic exposed individuals showed higher score for bronchiectasis [mean ± SD(Standard Deviation)] as 2.41 ± 2.32 vs. 1.22 ± 1.48 (P <0.001), pulmonary artery branch dilatation (PAD) as 2.48 ± 2.33 vs. 0.78 ± 1.56, (P <0.001) and pulmonary trunk dilatation as 0.26 ± 0.45 vs. nil. Age-adjusted prevalence odds ratio (POR) for Pulmonary Artery Dilatation Found in HRCT comparing those exposed to arsenic (Group 1) to unexposed participants (Group 2) was found to be 6.98 (CI: 2.26-16.48). There was a strong dose-response relationship between the PAD (Pulmonary Artery Dilatation) and cumulative arsenic exposure. Pulmonary trunk and branch dilatation in chronic arsenicosis is a frequent abnormality seen in HRCT Chest of arsenicosis patients. The significance of such finding needs further investigation.


Arsenic and lung disease; arsenic and bronchiectasis; arsenic and pulmonary artery dilatation; arsenic in hair; arsenicosis in West Bengal

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