Most patients who suffer from mesothelioma asbestos cancer work in construction sites and areas where frequent exposure to asbestos is possible. This type of cancer arises from cells located in the lining of the abdominal or chest cavity. When the disease affects the chest, medical professionals check the patient’s chest cavity by using a thoracoscope. However, mesothelioma that inflicts the abdomen may be checked by using a peritoneoscope or a special instrument that can inspect the abdomen thoroughly. In case a suspicious mass is detected, the mesothelioma may be diagnosed further by a biopsy. This procedure can help doctors determine the stage of the disease, as well as the best means to treat it.
Facts about Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma asbestos cancer frequently arises from cells that line that chest (pleura) or abdomen (peritoneum). The most common form is pleural mesothelioma, which comes with common symptoms that originate in the chest area. Furthermore, the least common of all types of mesothelioma is the one that affects the peritoneum or abdominal cavity. This disease is linked with various symptoms such as bowel obstruction, vomiting, nausea, and abdominal swelling.
There are two major types of cells linked with mesothelioma such as sarcomatoid and epithelial. In some instances, these types of cells are present in the disease, although sarcomatoid is quite rare and occurs in at least 15 percent of all cases of this ailment. There are also rare cases of mesothelioma, which can originate from non-malignant or benign cells. Benign mesothelioma is often cured and treated surgically.
Symptoms and Causes
Several patients who suffer from this type of mesothelioma experience shortness of breath. They may also be prone to chest pains, although the discomfort does not become worse when a person breathes deeply. This is quite a surprising condition since the outer surface of the lungs (pleura) is usually involved in this type of disease. Moreover, most patients are asymptomatic, and the disease is only diagnosed because of abnormal results in the chest x-ray or other physical exams.
With the development of the disease, patients may suffer from weight loss, shortness of breath, night sweats and poor appetite. In addition, the local invasion of the tumor may lead to a raspy voice, malfunctions of the diaphragm, and other symptoms that affect the adjacent structure of the body.
Several patients that suffer from malignant mesothelioma work or have worked in job sites where they frequently breathed in asbestos fibers. A high percentage of patients are also about 40 years of age, and they have been exposed to asbestos in various types of environment without their knowledge. Researchers have also discovered that new cases of this disease has been quite stable since 1983, which was the same time when the restrictions on asbestos were implemented by the OSHA or Occupational Safety and Health Administration in the United States. The percentage of new cases of asbestos-related cancer such as mesothelioma in Europe continues to increase.
Mesothelioma asbestos cancer develops because of frequent exposure in about one to two months, which can lead to the progress of the disease about 30 to 70 years later. Furthermore, the disease may show up after several decades due to the long latency period of this type of disease.
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