Mesothelioma, mesothelioma symptoms, diagnosis and treatments, mesothelioma lawyers and attorneys, asbestos cancer, peritoneal mesothelioma, pleural mesothelioma, pericardial mesothelioma

Thursday, December 01, 2005

What is Mesothelioma?

The National Cancer Institute states that: "Malignant mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer, is a disease in which cancer (malignant) cells are found in the sac lining the chest (the pleura), the lining of the abdominal cavity (the peritoneum) or the lining around the heart (the pericardium)."

How do you get Mesothelioma? Most people with malignant mesothelioma have worked on jobs where they breathed asbestos. Others have been exposed to asbestos in a household environment, often without knowing it. To learn more about the different ways in which people have been exposed.

How much exposure does it take to get the disease?An exposure of as little as one or two months can result in mesothelioma 30 or 40 years later.

What is the prognosis for mesothelioma?Like most cancers, the prognosis for this disease often depends on how early it is diagnosed and how aggressively it is treated.Mesothelioma and asbestos are so much linked that many people call it by the name of mesothelioma asbestos. While mesothelioma is a serious cancer, asbestos is its main cause. While one may approve of things that remain of use for a long time, their effect on the surroundings decides the worthiness of that product in the end. The same holds true with asbestos. The 1940s and 1950s saw a surge of ‘asbestos’ as the next best thing to happen after cement in the construction industry. Due to it’s high degree of stability and resistance to very high temperatures, asbestos was applied greatly in insulators and ceiling tiles in homes, schools and factories.

Mesothelioma is one of the most deadly forms of cancer known today – an incurable disease that claims the lives of over 10,000 victims in the United States each year. While medical science continues to developed miraculous technology that prolongs many of the lives ravaged by this insidious condition, a cure is still out of reach and the prognosis is always fatal. Tragically, there is usually little time left after a mesothelioma diagnosis, and physicians are left with few options except to help alleviate physical suffering and ensure that a victim’s final days are as comfortable and pain-free as possible.

Cancer can attack any system or organ in the body, and very often shows few external symptoms until it is too late. Another lethal aspect of cancer is comes from the nature of cancerous cells to spread to healthy surrounding tissues or travel through the circulatory or lymphatic systems. This combination of factors has made cancers like mesothelioma the single greatest threat to health around the globe.

Mesothelioma is a particularly destructive cancer, for decades pass between exposure to the asbestos and appearance of cancerous symptoms. Further complicating mesothelioma treatment is the malignant nature of the cancer, for once symptoms surface, current therapeutic treatments are usually no longer effective and post-diagnosis survival rates typically range from four months to a year.

There is only one known cause of mesothelioma: exposure to asbestos. Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral used for centuries in insulation, clothing, and fire-resistant materials. Ancients praised this versatile material, but also decried the lethal nature of the small fibers easily inhaled by anyone who used it. It was not until the 20th century that X-Rays, computed axial tomography (CAT) scans, and magnetic resonance imagery (MRI) revealed the extensive damage caused by these microscopic fibers. Even though advances are made every day in modern times, medical science is still only beginning to provide adequate treatment for mesothelioma.Responsibility for deadly asbestos exposure is primarily due to the proliferation of asbestos related materials combined with the negligence of the injury to properly warn their employees and consumers about the dangers of their products. For years the asbestos industry concealed or minimized the potential dangers their products posed in the name of profits, fearing lawsuits and diminished demand would ruin their businesses. Ultimately, this deception and negligence virtually destroyed the industry and nearly bankrupted several prominent insurance companies responsible for protecting asbestos companies against potential lawsuits.

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