Mesothelioma and Asbestos: Who’s at Risk?

October 20, 2022 12:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Mesothelioma is a deadly type of lung cancer that often takes decades to fully manifest itself. There is no known cure, although early detection can help to keep it in check.

You likely have encountered mesothelioma ads and infomercials aired on behalf of law firms looking for mesothelioma victims and surviving family members. That is because mesothelioma often has a direct cause that makes one or more parties liable for causing the conditions that lead to the onset of mesothelioma. It starts with asbestos exposure.

How Does Asbestos Exposure Cause Mesothelioma?

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that resists heat. When used in various products, it can produce microscopic fibers that you might inhale. Those fibers embed themselves in the inner lining of the lungs and very slowly irritate them.

Over time, the lungs develop scar tissue and pockets of fluid, which greatly reduces the ability to process oxygen. Many people suffering from the early effects of mesothelioma will notice shortness of breath and pressure on the chest. The pressure often becomes painful as the condition worsens.

Virtually all cases of mesothelioma are the direct result of breathing in asbestos particles. There are no other known causes.

Common Ways in Which Asbestos Exposure Occurs

Decades ago, asbestos was widely used in a large variety of products used inside homes, schools, and commercial buildings. It commonly was used in insulation, ceiling tiles, and wall coatings. It also saw a lot of use in military and industrial applications, including lining boilers, smokestacks, and hot water pipes.

Exposure typically occurs when working very near products containing asbestos or while removing material containing asbestos. Hollywood legend and actor Steve McQueen likely is the most famous person who died from mesothelioma. McQueen says he likely got it by scraping asbestos-laden material contained within ships while he was a service member with the U.S. Navy.

Before the 1980s, many people, from school children to corporate CEOs, commonly suffered asbestos exposure by breathing in the microscopic particles that became mixed with the air they breathed. State and federal laws have banned the widespread use of asbestos and ordered its removal from schools and public buildings.

Asbestos Continues To Be Used

Despite its known dangers, asbestos continues to see common use in many products. Brake pads, insulation on water pipes, and flooring tiles often contain asbestos. You will not find it in wall insulation, ceiling tiles, and wall coverings, though. Many other products also contain asbestos, but its use is greatly restricted.

Despite advancements in knowledge regarding the connection between asbestos and mesothelioma, many older buildings still contain hazardous materials that have asbestos. HealthSafe Inspections in Basalt, CO, can inspect your home or place of business and determine whether it presents an asbestos hazard. We also can check for other potentially hazardous substances, create a remediation plan, and inspect the property afterward to determine whether the troubling substances are gone. Contact us today to schedule a property inspection.

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