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Effect of Asbestos Fibers and the Association with Pneumonia Mortality

Sullivan, Sarah (2020) Effect of Asbestos Fibers and the Association with Pneumonia Mortality. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh.

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Asbestos fibers have a well-researched chronic impact on the immune system, they cause scarring and thickening of the lining associated with the lungs. Asbestos also affects the immunological response in the pulmonary system, due to constant inflammation as a result of the attempted phagocytosis by alveolar macrophages. Around the body, asbestos fibers can cause the suppression of the killing activity done by Natural Killer and Cytotoxic T-Lymphocytes cells, which makes the host more vulnerable for other infections such as pneumonia. The public health relevance lies with the elderly population, as due to the long latency period of the diseases associated with asbestos, elderly individuals are more at risk for experiencing a decrease in the efficiency of their immune system. With this decrease, they are also more at risk for pneumonia infections due to their age alone, it makes them more susceptible to pneumonia mortality. Given that Allegheny County has an elderly population that makes up almost a fifth of the total population, they are more at risk to experience the pneumonia-related deaths. The primary focus pneumonia-related deaths should be on the elderly population and those in the asbestos field in Allegheny County. The secondary focus should be on updating any training materials and policies that are used by the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) Asbestos Department for training incoming Inspectors, so that they are able to protect themselves efficiently and so the Department can standardize any medical surveillance system they create to protect their exposed employees.


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Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master's Thesis)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Sullivan, Sarahsbs65@pitt.edusbs65
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairMartinson, Jeremyjmartins@pitt.edujmartinsUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberTalbott, EvelynEOT1@pitt.edueot1UNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberSandberg, ShannonShannon.Sandberg@AlleghenyCounty.USUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date: 2020
Date Type: Submission
Number of Pages: 28
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Infectious Diseases and Microbiology
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 02 Sep 2020 21:10
Last Modified: 02 Sep 2020 21:10


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