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Types of Occupational Lung Diseases

Occupational lung diseases can be caused directly by exposure to a variety of dusts, chemicals, proteins or organisms, or by your body’s immune responses to these exposures.

These lung diseases include:

  • Asbestosis
  • Bronchiolitis obliterans
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Coal workers’ pneumoconiosis
  • Hypersensitivity pneumonitis
  • Occupational asthma
  • Reactive airways dysfunction syndrome (RADS)
  • Silicosis
What to Expect

You will speak to a nurse clinician coordinator to schedule your appointment. If you have had any prior scans, pulmonary function testing, arterial blood gases and/or exercise studies outside of Northwestern Medicine, we will ask you to have those records sent to us prior to your appointment. This will allow our team to review your data ahead of time, making your visit as efficient and informative as possible.

You will meet with a specialist who will perform an exam and discuss your prior test results. Together, you will establish a detailed follow-up plan, which may include additional testing or treatment.

Independent Medical Evaluations

Program physicians Robert A. Cohen, MD, and Leonard H.T. Go, MD, perform independent medical evaluations (IME) of patients who have possible occupational lung diseases. An IME is used for workers’ compensation and disability claims. We will provide a report with an informed expert opinion on the pulmonary diagnosis, suspected cause, and impairment associated with the disease, if any. To request an IME, please contact our team at 312.695.1843. TTY for the hearing impaired, 312.926.6363.

Meet the Team

A physician looks at a pulmonary scan of the lungs.

The Northwestern Medicine team is highly experienced in providing detailed recommendations, state-of-the-art diagnostic techniques and thorough follow-up plans to help ensure you receive excellent medical care.

Meet the Northwestern Medicine Occupational Lung Disease and Black Lung Program Team

Lung Transplantation Program

The Northwestern Medicine Lung Transplantation Program combines leading clinical practice with groundbreaking research in the diagnosis and treatment of all types of severe lung disease. With an active clinical trial program bringing new treatments and procedures to light, our pulmonary physicians offer experience, innovation and expertise in the treatment of complex lung disease.