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Silica associated systemic sclerosis: an occupational health hazard
  1. Dhyana S Shivakumar1,
  2. Navaneeth Sadananda Kamath2 and
  3. Anand Naik1
  1. 1General Medicine, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal, India
  2. 2General Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Navaneeth Sadananda Kamath; navaneeth.kamath.12{at}


A middle-aged male working in the sandblasting and stone-cutting industry was brought to the medicine department with skin tightness, dysphagia and discolouration of the skin for the last 1 year. On examination, he had skin thickening over the face and the extremities with restricted mouth opening. His hands were cold and showed peripheral cyanosis. Systemic examination was suggestive of diffuse cutaneous systemic sclerosis, further confirmed by the antinuclear antibody testing. Further, CT of the chest showed mediastinal lymphadenopathy with eggshell calcification and interstitial fibrosis consistent with silicosis and fibrotic non-specific interstitial pneumonitis. The patient was started on pulse monthly cyclophosphamide for six cycles, and steroids were given for 4 weeks and tapered. Tadalafil and amlodipine were given for his pulmonary artery hypertension and Raynaud’s phenomenon, respectively. This case also highlights the importance of periodic screening of the workers exposed to silica dust to prevent silicosis.

  • respiratory system
  • healthcare improvement and patient safety
  • exposures

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  • Contributors DSS has been involved in writing up the case report and preparing the manuscript and following up with the patient and taking consent from the patient for publishing the images. NSK has been directly involved in patient diagnosis and treatment along with AN.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.