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Asbestos Cancer

Feb 27, 2008
Asbestos cancer is a serious and rare disease that results from exposure to the fibrous mineral called asbestos. It occurs more frequently among men, especially those between the ages of 50 and 70; however, asbestos cancer is not unknown among women. In the US alone, about 2000 to 3000 men and women are diagnosed with asbestos cancer each year.

The most prevalent form of asbestos cancer is mesothelioma, or cancer of the mesothelium layer that covers most of the body's internal organs. For someone with asbestos cancer, the cells of the mesothelium grow out of control and become cancerous, affecting the proper functioning of these organs.

The symptoms of asbestos cancer are varied. Depending on the type of asbestos cancer, symptoms range from difficulty breathing to trouble swallowing, chronic cough, weight loss, fluid in the chest, and pain in the chest and abdomen. When the cancer metastasizes, the disease could start affecting surrounding organs that are otherwise healthy.

It should be noted that asbestos cancer is, as of this time, an incurable disease. It is, however, treatable and for those who are suffering from this debilitating disease, there are many options available.

As with any other types of cancer, asbestos cancer treatment applies the traditional cancer therapies. Often, these treatments are used in combination in order to reduce the damage caused by asbestos cancer to your body as well as prolong your life.

Three of the more common treatment options used in asbestos cancer are chemotherapy, radiation treatment, and surgery. As mentioned, these treatments may be used in combination or singularly applied to an individual.

How the cancer is treated depends on several factors, such as an individual's positive response to therapy. Because each individual has a different reaction to each type of treatment approach, the most important step in treating asbestos cancer is to conduct a complete and thorough evaluation of the patient.

One trouble that doctors are having when it comes to asbestos cancer is the fact that the disease could remain latent for a great number of years. In fact, it could take 20 to 50 years from first exposure to asbestos before the first signs of asbestos cancer can be observed. This is why it is important for you to get regular check ups if some time in the past you have been exposed to asbestos.

To determine whether you have asbestos cancer and begin the treatment process, a team of medical doctors will have to examine you. The team will likely be led by an oncologist who is a cancer specialist. You will also probably see a radiologist and a pulmonary therapist. To help you cope with the emotional stress that comes with being diagnosed with any deadly disease, you may ask for a social worker to join your team.
About the Author
If you want to learn more about epithelial mesothelioma then please check out my website for more information and advice - http://www.mesothelioma-asbestos-center.com
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