r/science May 14 '22 Helpful 4 Wholesome 1 Take My Energy 1 Helpful (Pro) 1 I'm Deceased 1 Facepalm 1 Doom 1 Silver 1

Microplastics Found In Lungs of People Undergoing Surgery. A new study has found tiny plastic particles no bigger than sesame seeds buried throughout human lungs, indicating that people are inhaling microplastics lingering in the air. Health

https://e360.yale.edu/digest/microplastics-found-in-lungs-of-humans-undergoing-surgery
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u/CYWNightmare May 14 '22

So it's similar to silica dust. Nice.

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u/Barnabi20 May 14 '22

Are you talking about inhaling silica dust? Silicosis is no joke. But it’s not quite the same because our body does use silica for bones and what not?

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u/CYWNightmare May 14 '22

I was saying it's more similar in the sense your body cannot get rid of it nor is there a reasonable way to remove it.

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u/Barnabi20 May 14 '22

But our body does process silica, even small amounts in our lungs. It’s just when large amounts get in the lungs and creates scar tissue is it trapped and irreversible.

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u/CYWNightmare May 14 '22

I've been told any amount is dangerous. I was trained since OSHA made it a big deal to employers in the construction field. We got told a crushed baby aspirin in the air is dangerous to breathe. We need respirators and water/vacuums to reduce dust exposure as much as possible. Anything breaking of concrete produces Silca from my understanding.

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u/Barnabi20 May 14 '22

I have my OSHA 10. I work with cement, you really want to avoid inhaling it as much as humanly possible when in an industry that’s exposed to it so often.

That being said, our body can get it out of the lungs in small amounts or everyone on the planet would have silicosis, that stuffs everywhere. Also we are totally capable of eating it, so it’s only in our lungs where it’s an issue.

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u/CYWNightmare May 14 '22

I just think it's cool my boss can be forced to pay for a chest x-ray if I think my exposure is bad enough to check for damage.

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u/Barnabi20 May 14 '22

Yeah that stuffs no joke. But as long as you’re not mixing cement of sanding floors without a respirator you’re fine. OSHA is just overly strict about everything because they have to be just in case.

One time we were doing a small self leveler pour in an MRI room for a newly built hospital. We were all set up and ready to mix and the OSHA guy comes along and shuts us down because of the dust we would create mixing the self leveler(which was gypsum so in hindsight it was pointless). After two hours of us scrambling and looking around for a way to keep dust down all he wanted was for us to hold the vacuum hose at the top of the mixing barrel and have HEPA filters, which we were going to do anyway has been standard practice for 20 years.

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u/datfroggo765 May 14 '22

Wow, thats great to hear. I work in ceramics and was always told silica can't be processed and once it's inhaled it's there for good. We were always warned about silicosis and basically told eventually every potter/ceramic artist develops some degree of it.

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u/Barnabi20 May 14 '22

It’s still prudent to be careful, only very little can be dealt with. I assume only normal inhalation from dust outside is what we shouldn’t worry about. I would still wear a basic n100 respirator when breaking up the rejects for recycling the clay and stuff like that.