Hi, I am a automobile painter. For the past few years I have gradually been feeling not well. I work in a shop that has very poor ventilation and no exhaust fans. In the last 6 months or so, I have been having strange symptoms pop up. First it was skin rashes on my face that the dermatologist couldn't identify. Shortly after that both knees suddenly became swollen and had to be drained. The orthopedist, after looking at x-rays said my knee structure looks fine and after many visits said he thought he saw a little bit of calcium in my knees that must be the problem. During all of this time I have experienced increasing heaviness in my chest, shortness of breath and a slight cough. I was sent to a heart doctor and had a stress test, echo cardiogram, EKG, and CAT scan. All of these tests were normal. Finally after receiving chest x-rays and a chest scan I was diagnosed with Emphysema and Asthma. The chemicals I work with contain Isocyanates, Benzene, toluene and many other harmful chemicals. Although I use Respirators, gloves and any other protective gear i can find with no ventilation these chemicals tend to hang around and can be absorbed through eyes and skin. I have been to many doctors and told them it was my opinion that "WORK" was making me sick. When I mention "WORK" they all shut down and don't want any thing to do with "WORK" related issues. Finally I found a Occupational lung doctor at Johns Hopkins medical center in Baltimore Md. He finally said it was his opinion my lung problem is work related. Now after searching nonstop for some one to help me with the poisoning of my entire body I cannot find a doctor and really don't know what kind of doctor to look for. I need help and any would be appreciated. Thank You, eighthnote
I worked as a Tech rep for one of the major automotive paint suppliers for 8 years. I read your post and have had the exact same symptoms and isocyanates were mostly to blame in my case. I'm now medically retired: chemical sensitive, have asthma, lupus like symptoms, arthritis, and now facing the possibility of thyroid cancer, with a biopsy scheduled for next week. I also now several people that worked painting that have the same problems. So the answer to your question is YES !
The best doctor for you to see in my opinion is:
Dr. Grace Ziem
Emmitsburg, MD 21727
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Wow finally somebody that knows. You mention lupus I was tested for lupus three times and I'm sure you guessed no lupus. Also tested for Lyme disease, rheumatoid arthritis and anything the doctor could think of to follow up on the symptoms. Nobody will listen when I mention the cause ISOCYONATES. When I mention painting cars and ISOCYONATES I think they have images of some guy with a roller and a brush painting away. No way could this guy get sick from that. Have you found a physician who understands your problem and is willing to research so you can be treated properly.
Thank You Very Much for your reply.
Good Luck I Feel Your Pain
I was also tested for Lyme disease, rheumatoid arthritis and anything the doctor could think of to follow up on the symptoms and all were negative.
The lupus test wasn't 100% "lupus" I had/have a positive "ANA-antinuclear Antibodies" test and the Dr. decided to call it Lupus.
Isocyanates are very dangerous and once you are "sensitized" you shouldn't continue to work in that environment. Prior to getting sensitized myself I worked as a sales/tech rep. I know of at least 4 people that died from what I now know was isocyanate poisoning, some while in the spray booth !!! If I hadn't gotten sensitized myself I would not have recognized the symptoms.
You need to contact:
Dr. Grace Ziem in Emmitsburg, MD. She is very experienced with Isocyanates and other chemical injuries. Look her name up online, tons of info.
hi i am a crane operator i was in the over headcrane in a neaclear plant they sprayed instacoat(isocyanate) fogged the whole containment building gasses go up. me and another person are having preblems company says no way of exposer i am 52 years never had any breathing problems . the other person is 22. dr has given me 60mg. predisone a day for 10 day now 30 4 days 20 4 days 10 days 5 4days +albuerol inhaler. not getting any better .i was able to go up to crane about 145 steps without stopping now i can't go but about 10 or12 stop cauth my breath .what else can i do
I have been exposed to this chemical as well. We spray truck bed liner coatings at work and the booth was leaking for several months, as in positive pressure versus negative pressure. I had been sick for 8 weeks with sinus problems, lots of mucus, chest congestion, fevers. dizzy, swollen eye lids and pain behind my eyes. My Doctor diagnosed a sinus infection. I am on my 3rd antibiotic and am doing somewhat better. I think I am doing better because my work has fixed the spray booth. The bosses at work would not recognize that the chemical most likely caused my trouble and did nothing to help me. I threatened to call OHSA and get a lawyer, now they want to send me to a company Doctor to get checked out. I did go to my own Doctor again and ask for an Isocyanate blood test profile to be done. I'm not sure what my next move should be but I wish this was all over and my health was back to normal.