Diseases Cancer

Does Asbestos Cause Cancer?

Published at 02/14/2012 17:16:43


Mesothelioma or widely known as asbestos cancer is one of the rarest and most fatal cancer amongst all kinds of medical ailments. The cancerous cells for such ailment are located in the mesothelium, which is a protective membrane that protects the majority of your internal organs. Most of the patients that have developed such cancer have inhaled asbestos or worked on construction sites. Nearly 90 percent of cases of mesothelioma are linked to direct exposure to asbestos.

What is Asbestos?

The majority of the cases related to asbestos cancer are caused by a hazardous substance called asbestos. This dangerous substance can be found in imported automobile brakes, old buildings and other industrial settings. You should avoid direct exposure to such substance since it can cause lung cancer as well as other severe chronic conditions in your lungs.


Types of Asbestos Cancer

There are three general forms of mesothelioma that can be attained through inhaling asbestos. The most common form is the pleural mesothelioma, which usually develops in the lung’s pleural lining. The less common form is the peritoneal mesothelioma that affects the abdominal lining. The rarest type is the pericardial mesothelioma, which affects the heart’s pericardial lining.


Common Symptoms

It will take twenty to fifty years for the symptoms to appear after the direct exposure to asbestos. Its lengthy latency period can make it very difficult for doctors to diagnose. The severity of these symptoms would vary depending on the type of mesothelioma contracted by the patient. The treatment options for such cancer are very limited once it is diagnosed since its vital symptoms would only appear on the later stages. Here are the general symptoms of mesothelioma:
• Pain in abdomen or chest
• Coughing
• Fluids in the abdomen, chest or lungs
• Appetite loss
• Sleeping disorders
• Unexplained weight loss
• Scratchy voice
• Difficulty swallowing
• Difficulty in breathing or shortness of breath



The treatments for mesothelioma involve chemotherapy, radiation and surgery. The treatments for such ailment are somewhat similar to other forms of cancer. However, the cancerous cells of such ailment are hard to remove through surgery. The longer mesothelioma goes unnoticed and undiagnosed, the harder they are to remove through surgical operations.

Chemotherapy has been widely utilized to treat such cancer. Researchers are still conducting studies with regards to adding new drugs that could efficiently cure such ailment with chemotherapy.

Radiation therapy can also slow down the development of tumor and cancerous cells. Recent experiments have confirmed that radiation therapy can prevent harmful cells from rejuvenating themselves after surgery.



The best way to prevent mesothelioma is to avoid direct exposure to asbestos. Identify if your home has the presence of asbestos in its insulation. Your home should be free from any harmful substance such as asbestos. You should also stay away from old building since some of them are abundant in asbestos fibers.

There are several occupations such as railroad engineers, miners, ship builders and factory workers that have higher risks of inhaling such substance. Individuals with such occupation should wear masks at all times to prevent themselves from inhaling such harmful substance that may eventually develop to asbestos cancer.

Tips and comments

Mesothelioma is a very complicated form of cancer. Individuals nowadays must be aware and knowledgeable of the proper procedures to avoid asbestos cancer.


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