Beryllium and beryllium compounds are considered category 1 carcinogens by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. Prolonged exposure can cause pulmonary and systemic disease (including CBD) resulting in fatigue, weakness, night sweats, difficulty in breathing and a persistent dry cough. It can also result in anorexia, weight loss, and may also lead to right-side heart enlargement and heart disease in advanced cases. Beryllium levels have been linked with arthritis, depression, and osteoporosis.
Beryllium was commonnly used in fluorescent lighting tubes, although this practice was discontinued in 1949. The potential for exposure to beryllium exists in the military, nuclear and aerospace industries, in the refining of beryllium metal and production and use of beryllium-containing alloys, and the manufacturing of electronic devices. Volcanic ash and some air pollution can also be sources of Beryllium exposure.