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Mesothelioma Symptoms May Not Occur For up to 50 Years from Exposure

Mar 13, 2008
Malignant mesothelioma is a rare cancer linked to asbestos exposure in a wide range of products and building or construction materials. It can be either benign or malignant. The lungs, heart, abdominal cavity and reproductive organs are those affected by this devastating disease. Classified as either localized where it is contained within the lining of the lungs or advanced where it involves multiple organs. Most malignant mesothelioma occurs in the lungs.

Treatments for mesothelioma are varied and include surgery, radiation and chemotherapy treatments depending on the location and involvement of the cancer. New treatments include Alimta chemotherapy drug approved by the FDA for use in patients that are not candidates for surgery. Alimta is used in combination with cisplatin therapy.

Mesothelioma symptoms may not occur for up to 50 years from exposure. Most occupations especially during WWII in shipyards where ship construction materials contained asbestos have the highest incident of mesothelioma symptoms and diagnosis. The majority of mesothelioma patients occurring in those occupations with direct exposure in mining, transportation, and the production of asbestos products for ship building and construction materials.

As far back as the 1800's asbestos products have been manufactured. And the awareness of the dangers has been known since the 1920's. Little was done to protect workers and the public from exposure risks. Instead manufacturers conspired to keep the information a secret.

With the onset of mesothelioma symptoms, the malignancy is usually advanced. Being aware of various occupations and manufactured materials that contain asbestos is important for the diagnosis once mesothelioma symptoms occur.

Let you doctor know if you have ever been exposed to asbestos products or lived with a person whose occupation involved asbestos products since secondary exposure also produces malignant mesothelioma. Other substances containing asbestos include: radiation contrast thorium dioxide for x-rays; polio vaccine which was contaminated with the Simian Virus 40 during 1955 to 1963; Erionite used in home construction in the country of Turkey.

Mesothelioma symptoms are similar to many other diseases and may be misdiagnosed. For this reason it is important for those exposed to asbestos to seek immediate medical attention with any mesothelioma symptoms. Pleural mesothelioma symptoms include dyspnea or shortness of breath, chest pain, persistent cough, weight loss, difficulty swallowing, fever and fluid detected in chest. Pericardial mesothelioma symptoms include chest pain, hoarseness, shortness of breath, difficulty swallowing, coughing of blood and palpitations; Peritoneal mesothelioma symptoms include weight loss, abdominal pain, build up of fluid in the abdomen, bowel obstruction, abnormal blood clotting, abdominal mass and fever.
About the Author
Nick Johnson is lead counsel with Johnson Law Group. Johnson represents plaintiffs in many states and focuses on injury cases involving Fen-Phen and PPH, Paxil, Mesothelioma, and Gadolinium. Call Nick Johnson at 1-888-311-5522 or visit http://www.johnsonlawgroup.com
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