June 14, 2021

There are already 12 workers in the Barcelona metro affected by asbestos

There are already 12 workers in the Barcelona metro affected by asbestos

The number of workers in the Barcelona metro who have some health condition possibly related to exposure to asbestos has risen to twelve, although none is serious or requires medical treatment, as reported by Metropolitan Transport of Barcelona (TMB).

Since last November, the public transport company of Barcelona has carried out specific medical examinations for all the subway personnel who during their professional life have been in scenarios of potential exposure to asbestos fibers when this material I used to habitually.

These medical examinations, which are voluntary, have already been submitted to about 600 workers, who have undergone a high-resolution computerized axial tomography, a diagnostic technique for the image more sensitive than the chest x-ray and which allows diagnose chest injuries early.

The results of these reviews have detected up to now 12 cases of pleural manifestations in which their possible relationship with asbestos exposure has been documented.

According to TMB, of these twelve cases (9 are pleural thickenings, 2 of non-calcified pleural plaques and 1 of calcified pleural plaque), none have serious pathology or clinical symptoms and have not required medical treatment, only periodic control within the general surveillance program Of the health.

The revisions to all subway workers who request it will continue throughout the year 2019, so TMB warns that, taking into account that between 3% and 14% of people exposed to asbestos have pleural manifestations, it is foreseeable that the number of cases increases in the coming months once the planned medical check-ups are completed.

When a worker is detected an affectation, it is referred to the Pneumology Service of the Vall d'Hebron Hospital, which is the one that monitors the case.

TMB has confirmed that since the implementation of the worker health surveillance program, the meter, due to its potential exposure to asbestos-containing materials, has not been diagnosed with any cases of pulmonary asbestosis, pleural mesothelioma, lung or mediastinal cancer.


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