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Respiratory Therapist/Isocyanate Bronchitis


I worked with isocyanate paint for 6 weeks. Quit 3 weeks back as I was poisoned by the fumes after painting an elevator shaft for two days. I had deep bronchitis & coughing for 4 hours after work.

The first week after quitting I was OK but the last 5 days I have had a severe case of bronchitis which I never normally get as I am fit & strong 47 yrs old. I am now on antibiotics which seem to have shifted most of it out of my chest & I feel much better but still not well.

My question is after my exposure to isocyanate - how long can I expect it to take for my symptoms to subside and for my airway to return to normal permanently?

Keeping in mind that I only held the job for 6 weeks & the paint was used maybe 1/2 the time. Only once did I experience the bronchitis while working there.

Also if I get a chest xray is it likely to reveal anything?

Because I have never personally heard of this and it is an occupational exposure, I would refer this question to Poison Control.

1 (800) 222-1222

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Larry W. Wical, BA-RRT


I CAN answer: ALL questions and queries related to the following topics... - Oxygen - Asthma - COPD - Bronchitis - Emphysema - Pneumonia (Viral/Bacterial) - Tuberculosis (TB) - SARS - Influenza (Flu) - Vaccines - Pulmonary Embolism - Pleural Effusion - Atelectasis - Inhalation injuries (burns, chemicals, etc.) - PFTs - Cardiovascular health - Sleep Apnea - BiPap/CPAP - Ventilators (Respirators) - Aspiration injuries - Thoracic injuries - Lung contusions - Tracheal injuries - Artificial Tracheostomy - Secretions - Prolotherapy/Regenerative Injection Therapy (RIT): A patient's experience/perspective - General health and fitness - Prolotherapy (from a patient's perspective) I CANNOT answer: Questions that vary too far from my primary scope of pulmonary and cardiovascular care and fitness. I promise to be open and honest about my knowledge of submitted topics, and will always openly provide my personal as well as professional feedback as it relates.


Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT, RCP) since 2005. I have worked primarily in the acute care, critical care, burn care and home care settings.

NBRC - National Board of Respiratory Care AARC - American Association of Respiratory Care

-All About Kids Magazine -The Clermont Sun -Cincy Sports & Fitness Magazine -Many online Fitness and Health blogs and "webazines"

- B.A. in Communication (1997) - A.A.S. in Respiratory Science (2005) - RRT license (state of OH, KY and IN) - Basic Life Saving (BLS) - Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) - Advanced Burn Life Support (ABLS)

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Currently work in the city's largest academic/research hospital.

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