What is mesothelioma?
That “-oma” ending is a giveaway: Mesothelioma is a type of cancer. A rare type of cancer, but a deadly one. Mesothelioma is a cancer that primarily affects the lungs, though it can also affect the heart, the abdominal cavity, and the pleurae, which are the thin membranes that surround the lungs. Cases of testicular mesothelioma are rare but not unheard of. The great majority of mesotheliomas – more than 80 percent – are caused by prolonged exposure to asbestos. That’s why this type of cancer is most common in people who have mined asbestos, manufactured or handled products that contain asbestos, live or work in buildings that contain asbestos – and their closest family members. Merely living with someone who works or lives in an asbestos-rich environment can increase one’s own risk of mesothelioma. Often, entire decades can pass between exposure to asbestos and a mesothelioma diagnosis. In almost all cases, mesothelioma is fatal. There is no cure.
How does asbestos cause mesothelioma?
Asbestos, in its naturally occurring state, is a fibrous material. It’s been mined for thousands of years because of its cheapness, resistance to fire, and insulating abilities. For all of those reasons, asbestos was used throughout the 19th and 20th centuries as an insulator and fire-retardant. It was not until the latter part of the 20th century that medical science came to understand that asbestos is a slow-acting killer. When it ages, asbestos can become brittle and release dust particles that easily become airborne. When inhaled, those tiny asbestos particles lodge in the lungs where, over years and decades, they can cause inflammation, tumors, scarring, and genetic damage.
What are the symptoms of mesothelioma?
In addition to having a long latency period, mesothelioma has symptoms that are unusually mild – so much so as to be nearly unrecognizable. That’s one of the reasons that it’s so dangerous. Even late-stage symptoms are relatively mild, and are often confused with the symptoms of other conditions. Some of the late-stage symptoms of mesothelioma include: • weight loss • shortness of breath • obstructed bowels • fluid buildup • chronic pain Even when people who exhibit one or more of these symptoms consult a doctor, a diagnosis of mesothelioma may require a process of elimination lasting months.
What are the treatment options for mesothelioma?
Though few people who contract mesothelioma will survive the disease, some treatments have shown limited success.
• Chemotherapy can relieve symptoms, reduce recurrence, and shrink tumors.
• Radiation therapy can prevent the spread of the disease, and can kill some cancer cells.
• Occasionally, surgery may be used to reduce a mesothelioma mass.
I have a doctor to treat my mesothelioma. Why would I need a lawyer, too?
A hundred years ago, companies could get away with exposing their workers to hazardous substances. They could even plead ignorance, and courts might find in their favor. But no more. At TheLawFirm.com, we believe that, even when companies had no malicious intent in exposing their employees to dangerous compounds like asbestos, they nevertheless profited immensely from that inherently unjust situation. We believe that that injustice should be punished. We believe that you have a right to your health and well-being, and that if somebody or some entity takes those precious things away from you, you have the right to receive compensation from them. If you or a loved one has suffered from the agony of mesothelioma, TheLawFirm.com can help you file a lawsuit that may result in your being compensated for: • medical expenses • lost wages, and the loss of the ability to earn wages • pain and suffering • punitive damages A doctor can help you feel better. Only a professional attorney – like those at TheLawFirm.com – can help you and your family overturn the injustice of asbestos-related mesothelioma. Call us today. The consultation is free, and you don’t pay us a cent until we win your case for you.