Inhaling asbestos fibers during your occupation is strongly linked to developing cancer, especially mesothelioma, which attacks the linings of the body's internal organs. Any asbestos risk assessment must take into account the following factors:
- Type of asbestos
- Length of fibers
- How much was inhaled
- How long a period it was being inhaled, and
- Other health considerations such as smoking
Among ordinary citizens in the U.S. the risk is generally much lower than for those who work or worked in an environment where asbestos was openly used—mining, some manufacturing (fabrics, brake parts, cement, insulation).
Lung cancer asbestos
What is peritoneal mesothelioma? Peritoneal mesothelioma is a rare cancer that develops in the lining of the abdominal cavity, called the peritoneum. The peritoneum helps protect our organs in the abdominal area and also produces a lubricating fluid to help them move smoothly inside as we move around. This type is much rarer than pleural mesothelioma.
When you seek medical attention for sharp, continuing upper abdominal pain, and if you believe you've suffered asbestos exposure at some time in your life, the first thing to do is ask your medical providers, do you know the answer to the question, "What is mesothelioma?" If they are not familiar with the disease, you will likely have a hard time getting a correct mesothelioma diagnosis.
What is asbestosis?
What is asbestosis? Asbestosis is the name given to a disease that involves difficulty breathing and where the patient is known to have had exposure to asbestos fibers. Lungs can become scarred from enough of these fibers, and a person would have a hard time breathing. Asbestosis is most likely to develop among people who were exposed to asbestos for a long time. Symptoms usually don't show up until some years after a person's been exposed. But once it's diagnosed, the condition can become disabling, and death is likely if the person continues to be exposed.
Asbestosis has been occurring mostly in people who worked at jobs where they were exposed to asbestos. In the 1970s the federal government began controlling how asbestos and asbestos products were used, and now there are strict regulations. Since the 1940s, up to 10 million people risked being exposed to asbestos.
Today most asbestos exposure happens when people remove old asbestos products or tear down old buildings.