Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that affected just the lungs originally. However, newer cases indicate that the disease could originate in other organ systems. It is a common occupational disease that could be fatal if left untreated. Patients who suspect that they have the disease should seek medical attention immediately.
What Causes Mesothelioma?
The most common cause of mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos. Prior to the 1980s, asbestos materials were used in commercial and residential construction projects. According to studies, the cases discovered at that time were caused by exposure in factories, shipyards, and mills. Exposure was also possible for residential property owners if their asbestos siding produced dust. It was the dust that was pulled through ventilation systems and placed workers or homeowners at risk.
What are the Most Recent Statistics for the Disease?
According to the latest reports, there are around 2,000 more cases of mesothelioma each year. Roughly eighty percent of the patients are men. Studies have shown an exposure level of at least 125 million Americans. The mesothelioma patients have survived up to one year after their diagnosis.
There are 75% of the mesothelioma cases are discovered in the lining of the lungs. One percent are found in the lining of the heart. Twenty-three percent are in the lining of the intestines. One percent of the cases are in the lining of the testes.
Testing for Mesothelioma
The patients undergo blood testing to determine if they have mesothelioma. The doctors look for the presence of specific cells. The cells include sarcomatoid, epitheliod, and biphasic. X-rays and exploratory surgery determine the stage of the disease.
What are the Most Common Symptoms?
Symptoms of mesothelioma include shortness of breath due to fluid accumulation in the lungs, chest pain, and weight loss. The patient experiences night sweats, fevers, wheezing, a dry cough, and pleural effusions.
Mesothelioma isn’t a death sentence for all patients. While it is detrimental, earlier detection of the disease could improve the patient’s chances of survival. Doctors provide chemotherapy, radiation, and other forms of treatment to eliminate the disease. The removal of asbestos products reduces the risk of developing the disease. Patients who want to find more details about the condition can read more here now.