Thu 23 Jul 2009
Mesothelioma cancer is cancer that is caused by exposure to asbestos,so some people call it asbestos cancer or asbestos disease. In this disease, malignant cells develop in the mesothelium, a protective lining that lines most of the body’s internal organs.
Its most common site is the pleura (outer lining of the lungs ), but it also occur in the peritoneum (the lining of the abdominal cavity) or the pericardium (a sac that surrounds the heart).
Mesothelioma patients are people whose work involve asbestos,where they inhaled asbestos particles, have been exposed to asbestos dust and fibre in some ways.Examples are doing home renovation using asbestos cement products.
No association between mesothelioma and smoking had been reported.
Signs and symptoms
It takes 20-50 years of exposure to asbestos for this cancer to show its symptoms in patients.Different Symptoms happens due to location where malignant cells develop.
Shortness of breath, cough, and pain in the chest are symptoms of pleural mesothelioma.
Whereas patients with peritoneal mesothelioma will have weight loss and cachexia, abdominal swelling and pain.
Working with asbestos is the major risk factor for mesothelioma. A history of asbestos exposure occurs in all cases. Somehow mesothelioma has been reported in some individuals without any known exposure to asbestos. Some rare cases, mesothelioma has also been associated with irradiation, intrapleural thorium dioxide (Thorotrast), and inhalation of other fibrous silicates, such as erionite.
asbestos = magnesium silicate, used for fireproofing, electrical insulation, building materials, brake linings, and chemical filters.