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In addition to mesothelioma, another health problem caused by exposure to asbestos is asbestosis. This is a lung disease that was first found in naval shipyard workers. As asbestos fibers are inhaled, they can become trapped in thye lunk tissue. The body tries to dissolve the fibers by secreting an acid. This acid is unable to affect the fiber, due to its high chmical resistance. But the surrounding tissue can become scarred. Over time, this scarring can become so severe that the lungs cannot function. Generally, a case of asbestosis takes between 25 to 40 years to fully develop.