• Risk Factors and Symptoms of Mesothelioma
  • December 28, 2017
  • Workers in Pennsylvania who work around asbestos need to be aware of mesothelioma, which is a common side effect of working in those conditions. A form of cancer, mesothelioma affects the layer of tissue that covers internal organs, and it is aggressive and often deadly.

    According to the Mayo Clinic, asbestos is the leading cause of mesothelioma. Asbestos is a mineral that is used in a variety of products, including brakes, flooring, insulation and shingles. Even brief exposure to this element can lead to cancer, which can take many years to develop. Research shows that certain risk factors can increase the chances of developing mesothelioma. These include:

    • A family history - those with an immediate family member who has mesothelioma are at greater risk
    • Living in close proximity with an asbestos worker - asbestos fibers can cling to pieces of clothing and the skin, increasing exposure to those living at home
    • Working or living in an asbestos-filled environment - direct exposure to asbestos greatly increases one's chances of developing mesothelioma

    According to the National Cancer Institute, there are common signs of malignant mesothelioma. One should visit the doctor if suffering from the following symptoms:

    • Coughing
    • Difficulty breathing
    • Swelling, lumps or pain in the abdominal region
    • Unexplained weight loss
    • Pain under the ribs
    • Constipation
    • Unusual blood clot formation
    • Extreme fatigue
    Mesothelioma may be diagnosed in a number of ways, including physical exam, CAT scan, chest x-rays and cell biopsy. Recovery from this type of cancer depends on a number of factors such as how long it has been there, the tumor size and the general health of the patient.