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Jackson & New Orleans Workers' Compensation / Blog / Personal Injury / Common Workplace Respiratory Issues in Louisiana: What You Need to Know

Common Workplace Respiratory Issues in Louisiana: What You Need to Know

workplace respiratory issues

Imagine struggling to breathe and knowing your employer caused your respiratory problem. It’s a heartbreaking situation that’s even more stressful when your employer won’t admit to their role in your health issues.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that up to 500 million U.S. workers are exposed to potentially harmful respiratory conditions at work. There are numerous dangers from chemicals, airborne particles, gases, mold spores, unclean air, and other types of exposures that put your health at risk.

Below are some of the most common respiratory issues we’ve seen in Louisiana here at Lunsford, Baskin, & Priebe. If you’re concerned about exposure to one of these dangers at work, contact us about workers’ compensation for a respiratory condition.


When your workplace is constantly full of airborne or surface-borne allergenic substances, it’s a toxic environment that can trigger mild to severe allergies. Over time, this exposure can wear down your immune system and cause respiratory suffering.


Asbestos is a type of fibrous mineral that has been a known carcinogen for decades. Still, some workplaces are full of asbestos from walls, ceilings, building materials, construction, and demolition. Asbestos can harm your lungs and the lining of your abdominal cavity, sometimes taking 10 or more years before symptoms arise.


Asthma from workplace respiratory dangers should be taken seriously. It can progress to serious airway obstruction that threatens your breathing and your life. Poor indoor air quality is a common contributor to asthma, as are some healthcare environments with constant exposure to latex and medical substances.

Coal mining dust

Despite decades of safety warnings, the Louisiana coal mining industry still has significant challenges with controlling coal mine dust. It can cause pulmonary disorders, lung disorders, cancer, respiratory failure, and death.


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a set of pulmonary disorders that includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema. It’s one of the leading causes of death in the U.S. and must be treated as early as possible to prevent negative health outcomes. It’s commonly found in industrial settings like mining and construction.

Hypersensitivity pneumonitis

This is an inflammatory lung disorder that causes fever, chills, shortness of breath, and lung scarring that can lead to severe lung disease. It’s often found in people who work in moldy buildings, handle irritant chemicals, work with birds, or frequently encounter bacteria in their work environment.

Lung cancer

If you’re concerned about your risk of lung cancer due to workplace respiratory dangers, talk to your lawyer as soon as possible. Lung cancer and malignant lung disease have high mortality rates. Industries with high rates of lung cancer include diesel truck driving, construction, metalworking, and the nanotech/nanoparticle field.

Pulmonary disease

When lung tissue begins to break down and fill with fluid, this is known as pulmonary disease. It causes extremely difficult breathing and life-threatening reductions in vital oxygen flow to the lungs and organs.


Silicosis is caused by the presence of silica dust in the lungs, which can lead to fluid buildup and lung tissue scarring. Silicosis may happen gradually over time or it can arise from a short but intense level of exposure.

Don’t Let Your Employer Minimize Your Respiratory Issues

It’s all too common for employers to ignore employees’ complaints about respiratory issues or sweep air quality problems under the rug. However, your rights are protected under Louisiana state laws and federal employment laws.

If your employer is being difficult about your workers’ compensation claim for a respiratory issue, reach out to Lunsford, Baskin, & Priebe for compassionate and experienced legal assistance. We’re here to help you get the compensation you deserve so you can breathe easier.

Connect With an Experienced Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Attorney

Filing a workers’ compensation claim is challenging, especially when you’re struggling with a respiratory disorder. For a free consultation with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer in Louisiana, contact Lunsford, Baskin, & Priebe, PLLC. After-hours visits are available.

Lunsford, Baskin, & Priebe, PLLC in Louisiana

Contact us for a free consultation.



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