Black Mine Misery Condition in Pathfinder Pirates | World Anvil

Black Mine Misery

Black Mine Misery is the common name of a medical condition that most miners will face in their lifetime. While not contagious, the condition is severe enough to leave many disabled for the rest of their lives, provided that they live beyond the initial diagnosis. Black Mine Misery is caused by repeated exposure to black diamond dust. The dust settles within the miner's lungs, damaging and scarring them as it does. In the beginning stages, the damage is mild enough that most won't notice their symptoms and thus, they'll continue to expose themselves and let the disease progress.   Common symptoms include:
  • Dry coughing, usually accompanied by blood
  • A metallic taste on the tongue that never fades
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Excessive swallowing, with or without dry mouth
  Uncommon symptoms:
  • Nasal congestion
  • Painful rashes that form on the throat or chest
  • A burning sensation when inhaling
  Once Black Mine Misery has progressed into the next stage, the chances of survival drop significantly as the disease worsens at a much faster rate. The lungs are left heavily scarred and inflamed from exposure. Breathing is much more difficult and becomes increasingly painful as time goes on. This is due to the diamond dust particles crystallizing within the scar tissue, which forms around these small shards, unintentionally securing them in place. Their presence causes chronic inflammation of the lungs, which in some cases, eventually leads to death by asphyxiation.   The final stage of Black Mine Misery is complete physical decline. Miners lose their appetites due to the pain that swallowing brings and most need some kind of aid in order to get enough oxygen in their bodies. The chest is debilitating and voices have grown hoarse while others are unable to speak. While the disease itself rarely kills on its own, the side effects lead to frequent cases of starvation, dehydration, and suicide.

Transmission & Vectors



Dry coughing, coughing up blood, phantom metallic taste, shortness of breath, chest pain, excessive swallowing with or without dry mouth, nasal congestion, painful rashes on throat or chest, and a burning sensation when inhaling.


In the beginning stages, it can be treated with a restoration spell from a divine cleric. Advanced stages of it have no known cure as there's no safe way to remove the crystallized shards from the sufferer's lungs. The suffering can be minimized with the use of opium to dull the pain.


In the first stage, prognosis is good and chances of survival are high. That chance drops significantly if not treated right away and the sufferer continues to expose themselves to black diamond dust.
Chemical Compound
Chronic, Acquired

Cover image: by Kal V, derivative work created with the Canva Content License


Please Login in order to comment!