Department of Health and Human Services Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry CASE STUDIES IN ENVIRONMENTAL MEDICINE ASBESTOS TOXICITY April 19, 2007
Who is at risk of exposure to asbestos?
In the past, asbestos exposure was associated mainly with mining and milling of the raw material and with workers engaged in construction and product manufacture or use of end products. In the industrialized West, these heavy asbestos exposures peaked during the 1960s and 1970s and then it declined as worker protection regulations were put in place and later as industrial use of asbestos decreased.
Because of long latency periods (10 to 40 years), workers exposed to asbestos in the 1960s and 1970s are now manifesting asbestos-associated diseases. Indeed, the incidence of asbestos-associated diseases among people occupationally exposed is beginning to peak and will likely begin to decline some time in the next two decades. National statistics that illustrate this trend are available at: www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/surveillance/ords/NationalStatistics.htmlCourtesy of The ATSDR.