How do you get mesothelioma? The disease is a kind of cancers that affect the membranes that cover the lungs, heart, and abdominal cavity. So, although it is also known as lung cancer, the cancer cells are basically not exactly located in the lungs.
Although the cases of the disease quite rare, there are around 3,000 patients are diagnosed with this disease in the US. The majority of the patients have been radiated by the asbestos dust, a kind of substances related to certain jobs.
How can asbestos cause cancer?
In particular industries, mainly the constructions, asbestos are considered using as the main materials for some benefits it gives. It has some characteristics including being heat and fire resistant. However, the molecules that tend to be solid and sharp are dangerous for human health.
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Moreover, asbestos may produce dust that can be simply inhaled when people are just in the area. When it is accumulated, it may damage pleura or a membrane that covers the lungs. Later, the wound is inflamed and cancer cells can just simply appear and grow up. This is how mesothelioma occurs anyway.
Pleural mesothelioma or the mesothelioma occurred in the lung membrane is the most common case to find around. However, there are some other types; peritoneal, pericardial, and testicular or vaginal mesotheliomas.
In peritoneal mesothelioma, the asbestos dust is accumulated in the peritoneum or the abdominal membrane. In general, the disease is caused by patients who eat foods that have been radiated by the asbestos dust. The foods are eventually eaten and cancer grows up.
Meanwhile, pericardial mesothelioma refers to the mesothelioma that affects the pericardium of the membrane that covers the heart. This type is commonly a continuation of the pleural mesothelioma. In other words, the patients of pericardial mesothelioma may have the same problems in their pleura.
Lastly, there is the testicular and vaginal mesothelioma a kind of cancers that affect the genital areas of male and female respectively. For this last type, it is quite rare and not known yet how the asbestos dust can affect the patients’ sex organs.
What are the working fields with the highest risk of the disease?
Sure, it means that any job dealing with asbestos dust risks the workers to have this disease. Those working fields are including construction, fabric with asbestos as a material, military ship, and mining. Aside from asbestos, the radiation of zeolite is suspected to give the same effects although further research has not been conducted yet.
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Despite the workers, if you are living in the construction or mining areas, there are also risks for this disease. The symptoms itself can only be detected after more than 10 years even if you are not near to the asbestos area anymore.
Due to the danger, many governments have published regulations related to asbestos uses. Some of them may ask the industries to only reduce the use while some others even completely stop it. Sure, the treatment for mesothelioma cancer is indeed really difficult and expensive. So, it is much better to prevent it since the beginning.