The main cause of mesothelioma is asbestos. Malignant mesothelioma is a type of cancer that can only form from a chemical known as asbestos. When inhaled, asbestos can severely damage your lungs, leading to the development of cancerous tumors. Victims of mesothelioma can have damages begin to affect them years later in life — sometimes 20, or even 50, years after being exposed to asbestos.
With time comes a greater risk of both DNA damage and tissue damage to your lungs. The asbestos fibers can transfer around your body, which can cause side effects to areas such as your heart, stomach, and chest. While mesothelioma may not be noticeable right away, it is important to consult with your doctor regularly to conduct checkups. A simple x-ray or blood test could indicate that you suffered exposure to asbestos and have mesothelioma.
Asbestos has not been in use since the 20th century; however, many types of occupations suffered exposure to the chemical, still putting some people at risk today. Military members, painters, electricians, carpenters, construction workers, and many other occupations suffered exposure to this deadly chemical on a regular basis. Some occupations even worked directly in asbestos plants. Other people suffered from mesothelioma because they lived near asbestos plants or contaminated locations.
Asbestos Through the Workplace and Other Exposers
As mentioned, there are many occupations that regularly suffered exposure to asbestos. Unfortunately for most Americans, their source of income is the most common way they can ever encounter asbestos. Beyond the workplace, asbestos can occur in your own home from insulation that is built with this deadly chemical. In other cases, you may be exposed to asbestos from locations in your community or in the natural environment.
As a result of the use of asbestos in construction before the 1970s, it is found in many commercial and residential properties. As a main component of drywall and insulation materials, asbestos is found in cement, ceiling tiles, piping, adhesives, and more.
The workers exposed to asbestos on the job also brought it home on their clothes. Thus, family members may have also experienced second-hand asbestos without ever knowing it. Others suffered exposure to asbestos through their local community and the environment. In the 19th and 20th centuries, it was very common for towns and cities to mine for asbestos. These toxins filled the air the population breathed, and it led to many cases of mesothelioma over the years.
Today, there is still a major risk of people being exposed to asbestos. Several occupations, such as those in construction, may still encounter asbestos when working on old buildings or job sites. The asbestos can even be a threat to firefighters when they enter older buildings. Demolitions can also lead to asbestos exposure, as a lack of safety checks prior to destruction could result in asbestos fibers in the air. Even when contractors are renovating older homes, they could still be exposed to asbestos from prior building materials or insulation.
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Age and the Development of Asbestos
Age will not have an effect on the risks of obtaining mesothelioma from asbestos; however, age does play a key role in its development. Your age will impact the prognosis of mesothelioma, as asbestos can really start to impact the human body between 20 and 50 years after exposure.
The older you are when mesothelioma begins to take its toll on the body, the harder it is to recover. As with most illnesses, the human body’s respiratory system cannot fight off infections as well as when they were much younger. In addition, the most severe signs and symptoms of this cancer could begin to impact you when you are planning to retire. Your 50s, 60s, and 70s are meant for relaxation and enjoyment—not to be spent fighting for your life in a hospital due to asbestos-related illnesses.
It is actually most common for people in their early 80s to experience mesothelioma. While most people are diagnosed around the age of 65, many Americans aged 85 and older still report mesothelioma.
Ben Crump Law, PLLC Can Investigate Your Mesothelioma Case
If you or a loved one suffered exposure to asbestos, the main cause of mesothelioma, attorney Ben Crump Law, PLLC will help you seek justice against these reckless manufacturers. Your health is what is most important to our firm. We can review your medical history, help you determine how you suffered exposure, and begin the legal process with you.
Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC today at 800-709-1441 for your free consultation with a member of our team.