Image of human lungs.

Scientists have found microplastics in the lungs of living people.

Eleven samples removed from 13 patients undergoing surgery were found to contain microplastics, with the two most common particles being polypropylene and PET.

Previous studies had found microplastics at similarly high rates in lung tissue taken during autopsies.

Microplastics are found in air, food and water, and so enter the body via breathing, eating and drinking.

Although the impact on health is not yet known, workers exposed to high levels of microplastics have developed disease, reports The Guardian.