Nearly seven out of every ten first responders suffered some sort of lung problem during or after their work at the World Trade Center site, according to a report released Tuesday by Mount Sinai.
The hospital released the results of what it calls the largest and most inclusive study of the health effects first responders suffered at the WTC site.
According to the report, nearly 70 percent of first responders have a new or worsened respiratory symptom since working at the site.
Among those who had no health problems before Sept. 11, 61 percent developed symptoms after exposure to the toxic dust.
One third of those tested have abnormal lung function, with the rate of abnormality double that of the general population.
Mount Sinai's five-year-long study is based on findings from medical exams conducted between July of 2002 and April of 2004 among 9,500 rescue workers.
The report suggests that people who responded right after the attacks experience the worst health effects.
Meanwhile, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced a series of initiatives to help those first responders who suffer from lung problems.
He announced that the city is creating a five-year, 16-million- dollar environmental health center to treat those first responders and anyone who feels they are suffering from the effects of the dust they inhaled after the attacks.
He has also urged the federal government to reopen the federal victims compensation fund and to fully finance the Trade Center Health Registry, which catalogues health problems of 71,000 people and directs first responders to the appropriate treatment.