1. What is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that attacks mesothelial cells, which make up membrane lining in the chest and abdominal cavity. The mesothelial cells make up the tissue called mesothelium that helps protect the organs. Mesothelioma is caused by asbestos exposure and is commonly located in the pleural and peritoneal regions. The pleural is the membrane that lines the lungs and chest cavity and peritoneal is the lining of the abdomen.
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2. What Is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a very toxic fibrous mineral when it is inhaled, absorbed, or ingested. Asbestos is mined from the ground and is found all over the world. Asbestos was commonly used as an insulation material before the dangers and risks of abestos were known. Asbestos fibers last within the body forever once they are inhaled and cause ailments like mesothelioma and many other asbestos-related problems, such as asbestosis and a number of cancers. Usually extended exposure to asbestos is needed to develop a problem, though cases of secondhand asbestos exposure leading to mesothelioma have been surfacing.
Asbestos is the most dangerous when it is airborne because the lightness of the asbestos fibers allows them to stay in the air for long periods of time and to travel a far distance. Professional abatement services exist to remove asbestos from your home or workplace. It is not safe to remove asbestos yourself.
3. Is Asbestos Still Found In Products Today?
There are still many products that contain asbestos today. A few of the asbestos-containing products are:
- pipe and duct insulation
- building insulation
- carpet underlays
- roofing materials
- wall and ceiling panels
- artificial fireplaces and materials
- toasters and other household appliances
- furnaces and other furnace door gaskets
- patching and spackling compounds
- electrical wires
- textured paints
- brake pads and linings
- potholders and ironing board pads
- hair dryers
- floor tiles
4. How Long Does It Take To Develop Asbestos Exposure Diseases?
There is a latency period between the time of exposure to asbestos and the manifestation of asbestos diseases that usually varies between several years and several decades. Many asbestos cancers will not appear in a victim until 20 years or more after their first exposure to asbestos. Typically, asbestosis or pleural plaques will not occur until at least ten to twenty years after first exposure. The time will vary depending on the extent of asbestos exposure and the individual’s susceptibility.
5. What Is the Difference Between Tobacco Related Cancer and Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma affects the lungs but is not a lung cancer. Smokers are at risk for lung cancer in the lungas inner tissue opposed to mesothelioma, which is in the tissue covering the lung.
6. Who Is Most At Risk For Mesothelioma?
Asbestos-exposed people, especially that work in the building, construction, shipbuilding, railroad, and automotive industries have a very high risk for developing mesothelioma. These industries consist mainly of men, which is a good indicator of why 80% of the patients with mesothelioma are male. Exposure to asbestos or any other type of toxic mineral increases a person’s chances of developing mesothelioma.
7. What Are Common Symptoms For Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is hard to diagnosis early because the symptoms are very non-specific. Mesothelioma symptoms may sometimes resemble viral pneumonia in that shortness of breath, chest pain, or persistent cough may be present while other people will not experience any symptoms. It is also confused with things in your lifestyle, such as obesity, smoking, or inactivity. Other symptoms may include fever, night sweats, and weight loss. Pain or swelling in the abdomen due to a build-up of fluid, nausea, bowel obstruction, anemia, and swelling of the feet may also be present.
8. What is Mesothelioma Treatment?
Currently a standard mesothelioma treatment does not exist and the FDA has not yet articulated a treatment. There is not a good understanding of mesothelioma at this time, but early diagnosis of mesothelioma does allow a greater number of treatment options. Different mesothelioma treatment options include chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, experimental therapies and drugs, complementary medicine and therapies, and lifestyle modifications.
9. Where Can I Get More Information About My Asbestos and Mesothelioma Legal Rights?
We can answer any questions you have regarding asbestos exposure and your mesothelioma legal rights if you contact an Asbestos Attorney. Legal compensation is available for victims of mesothelioma that were improperly and intentionally harmed by asbestos exposure.