Mesothelioma is a cancer that occurs in the mesothelium, the thin layer of tissue that lines the body’s internal organs. Mesothelioma most often affects the tissue surrounding the lungs, the abdomen, and the heart.
Mesothelioma is a cancer that develops in the mesothelial tissue that lines the lungs, the heart, the stomach, and very rarely, the testicles. The cause of mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos. Asbestos is a mineral fiber that was used for decades in thousands of products due to its strength, durability, and heat resistance. Asbestos companies concealed the fact that their products could cause mesothelioma and other health problems, resulting in millions of people being needlessly exposed to this deadly substance.
Mesothelioma can take decades to develop following asbestos exposure, making diagnosis difficult. Diagnosis is also complicated by early symptoms such as shortness of breath and abdominal pain that can mimic other, less serious ailments. Patients who are experiencing mesothelioma symptoms and are aware of their asbestos exposure should mention this to their doctor to improve the chances of early diagnosis, which usually gives patients a better long-term prognosis. Significant strides in mesothelioma treatment have been made in recent years.
Millions of people who served in the military were exposed to asbestos. About 1/3 of all mesothelioma deaths involve veterans. Find out how veterans can get help with mesothelioma.
OCCUPATIONAL ASBESTOS EXPOSURE
Tens of millions of American workers have been exposed to asbestos. Occupational asbestos exposure is recognized to be particularly high in certain lines of work. People who worked in these occupations may be at higher risk for developing mesothelioma.