Respirable Crystalline Silica

The HSE has recently released updated guidance on health surveillance for workers exposed to silica dust that can be breathed in. This is known as respirable crystalline silica or RCS. RCS can lead to a number of health problems including silicosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Silica exposure is also linked to lung cancer.

Hobson Health has developed a mobile x-ray service, with x-rays delivered on customers’ sites (room audit required) to minimise workplace disruption.  We have delivered many hundreds of x-rays since launching our service.  Our prices are extremely cost-effective, and we can offer excellent availability for on-site clinics.

Whilst silicosis was previously a serious problem, improved workplace conditions and in particular prevention of dusty working has seen the condition mainly disappear. However many workers are still exposed to RCS and whilst most exposures tend to be below the Workplace Exposure Level or WEL there is still a risk of health problems particularly if exposed to RCS over many years.

Chest x-rays can detect the first stages of silicosis before it affects breathing or causes symptoms so it is a considered a useful and valid test within a full health surveillance programme.

After 15 years of exposure, the HSE recommends an x-ray which is then repeated every 3 years.

If you would like further advice about silica and health surveillance and chest x-rays we would be pleased to advise you further.  Call our commercial team for more information on 01782 574200.