In a recent survey conducted by the Department of Health, it was reported that nearly 2000 people had been diagnosed with mesothelioma in the US alone. The comforting news is that affected individuals and families can look for support at www.asbestos.com. You can find financial help, experienced doctors and read about preventive measures.
What Is Mesothelioma? The mesothelium is a protective lining that covers the internal organs of the human body. The function of this protective layer of cells is to secrete a lubricating fluid that enables the smooth movement of the tissues and the underlying organs. Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that affects the lining of the lungs while the abdominal lining and the sac near the heart are rarely affected.
Causes Of Mesothelioma One of the main causes of this rare cancer is the exposure to asbestos. These are a group of minerals that contain minute fibers that are immune to heat and chemicals. As a result, this material does not permit the conduction of electricity. The tiny fibers make their way into the human body when they are released into the environment during the manufacturing or construction process.
Continuous exposure to this dangerous substance can lead to mesothelioma and can be life threatening if they are not treated on time.
Common Symptoms The actual signs of mesothelioma do not show until twenty to fifty years after the exposure to asbestos. This means a significant period has passed without the diagnosis of the problem. If you experience shortness of breath, acute chest pain, sudden weight loss and pain in the abdomen, you must consult a physician immediately.
It can often be misleading as the initial symptoms can be caused by other ailments, so people tend to ignore or neglect these signs.
Symptoms of pleural mesothelioma can include a sharp pain along the side of the chest, shortness of breath, fever and cough, tiredness and excessive sweating.
Peritoneal mesothelioma can be diagnosed if you complain of abdominal pain, constipation, swelling in the abdomen region followed by nausea. Note that these symptoms are caused due to mesothelioma, and can often be confused with other common ailments like a common cold or general malaise. Visit a doctor if you had continuous exposure to asbestos so that the disease can be treated effectively.
Diagnosis Blood tests and X-rays are used to diagnose malignant mesothelioma in the peritoneum.
Physical Examination- Your doctor will prescribe a set of tests and may examine the body to check for signs of the disease like a lump or anything that might seem unusual. Your eating habits, general lifestyle and past medical history will be taken into account before starting the treatment.
Prevention Mesothelioma can be prevented by providing general awareness on the use of asbestos, talking to the workers regarding the hazards of the mineral substance and performing air monitoring to keep track of the presence of asbestos particles in the environment.
Cure Patients who have been diagnosed with early-stage cancer will have to undergo surgery or chemotherapy. These drugs prevent the cells from multiplying rapidly and help in controlling the disease. Lastly, support is necessary for individuals known to suffer from this type of rare cancer.