X-Ray Diagnosis of Skeletal Fluorosis
In 1937, Kaj Roholm published his seminal study Fluorine Intoxication in which he described three phases of bone changes that occur in skeletal fluorosis. (See below). These three phases, which are detectable by x-ray, have been widely used as a diagnostic guide for detecting the disease. They describe an osteosclerotic bone disease that develops first in the axial skeleton (the spine, pelvis, and ribs), and ultimately results in extensive calcification of ligaments and cartilage, as well as bony outgrowths such as osteophytes and exostoses.
“Pain is a cardinal feature due to arthritic lesions and to secondary peripheral nerve involvement… Workers at risk: aluminium smelters, phosphate fertilizer, ceramics, steel, glass industries.”