A patient with Mesothelioma
usually begins showing
symptoms 10 to 50 years after their exposure to asbestos. It is a rare form of
cancer almost always caused by exposure to asbestos dust.
It is not
uncommon for people to have been diagnosed who have lived near asbestos
factories or who have washed their husband’s clothing. You need not have worked
with asbestos in order to develop Mesothelioma as it can be caused by only
small amounts of exposure. The risk of developing the disease increases
depending on how much asbestos dust you have breathed in, the more you have
breathed in the more at risk you are of developing the disease. It
is estimated that more than up to 3,000 Americans face a mesothelioma diagnosis
Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer, many people
aren’t even aware that they have it. It is very subtle at the beginning and
could go unnoticed. Some people have experience no symptoms at all and this can
lead to being left undiagnosed or misdiagnosed for several years. The development of the disease can take between 10 – 40+ years after
exposure to asbestos dust.
Mesothelioma victims are affected by the cells that comprise the lining of vital organs such
as the lungs, the heart, and the abdomen. This cancer causes lining
cells, known as mesothelioma, to divide at an abnormally fast rate. This
rapid mesothelial cell regeneration leads to the buildup of scar tissue, fluid,
and tumors that compromise organ function and can lead to the death of the
patient. It is difficult to diagnose and quite often a biopsy
needs to be carried out to diagnose mesothelioma. Unlike lung cancer there is
no known connection between cigarette smoking and the development of the
Mesothelioma CausesExposure to asbestos is the main cause of mesothelioma. Asbestos is a mineral commonly used as an insulator and binding agent in industrial, commercial, and residential products and equipment. Though the dangers of asbestos exposure and the resulting asbestos-related diseases like asbestosis have been documented for more than a century, products containing asbestos are still on the market in the United States today.
More than 80 percent of mesothelioma and asbestosis patients were exposed to asbestos on the job. This occupational exposure to asbestos, when industry clearly knew of the dangers associated with the material, has been the basis for thousands of mesothelioma and asbestosis patients .