Tag Archives: Asbestos

Study Shows Asbestos Bans are Slow to Reduce Malignant Mesothelioma Rates

It has been more than 32 years since Denmark began in 1972 a ban on the use of asbestos insulation. In the late 1980s, Denmark also extended its ban to include other products containing asbestos.  And now, Denmark is one of 55 countries who have completely banned asbestos  products.  

But according to the new study of mesothelioma in Denmark, a steady rise in cases of this asbestos-linked cancer that began in the 1950s is still going on.

Mesothelioma and Asbestos

Mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer of the membranes around internal organs, most often the lungs or abdomen of the patient. It is a deadly disease that comes from exposure to the mineral asbestos.

Asbestos was made into a popular insulator and component in building materials worldwide back in the 1930s because it was readily available, cost little, and its very resistant to fire and corrosion.  The use of Asbestos in the building materials has put hundreds of thousands of workers at risk for mesothelioma.

Many countries, including Denmark, began in the 1950s and 60s to reduce their use of Asbestos products after it was linked to mesothelioma cancer as well as other unhealthy conditions.Pleural Mesothelioma Asbestos Lung Cancer

In a Danish study, the research team used data from the years 1943 through 2009 about mesothelioma stored at the Danish Cancer Registry. The researchers discovered the total incidence of mesothelioma continued to rise throughout the study period showing a peak of 1.76 cases per 100,000 people during the years 2008-2009.

The study also identified more cases in the Region of Northern Jutland in comparison to Southern Denmark.  While mesothelioma survival rate has improved slightly, the researchers noted that the  prognosis for getting mesothelioma continues to remain poor based on a median rate of 12.5 months survival for men and 13.3 months survival for women in the years 2008 through 2009.

In the Danish Medical Journal, the authors conclude:

“The national malignant mesothelioma incidence for men continues to increase, perhaps showing a slight tendency towards deceleration in the most recent decade,”

But they go on to say that:

“A clear long-term effect of the Danish asbestos ban has not yet occurred.”

Lag Time between Asbestos Exposure and Mesothelioma Diagnosis

With mesothelioma, the lag time  (latency period) between exposure to asbestos  and the development of the disease can be many decades.   It is during the latency period that the disease is very difficult to detect and diagnose, much less tracing its source.  Frequently mesothelioma cancer is diagnosed late in its development, and it tends to progress quickly.  Estimates from the World Health Organization show that since 1994, more than 92,000 people have died from mesothelioma cancer.

RESULTS:

In Denmark, the national incidence of malignant mesothelioma cancer for men has been rising during the study period, reaching its total maximum of 1.76 in 2008-2009.  The incidence rate has remained relatively steady for women with a maximum of 0.5 in 1973 through 1977.

Northern Jutland and the surrounding region records the highest male incidence rate of mesothelioma since the late 1980s. The difference in relative risk for men in the Region of Southern Denmark and the Region of Northern Jutland was 1.53 during the period of 2008-2009.  The relative risk of developing mesothelioma cancer in the Region of Northern Jutland for the entire study period when collectively compared to the whole of Denmark was 1.38.  The study showed there are no notable regional differences for women at risk of developing mesothelioma.  Therefore, survival has slightly improved for both genders, but still remains poor with a median survival of 12.5 months for men and 13.3 months for women in the period of 2008 through 2009.

CONCLUSION:

Within Denmark the national malignant mesothelioma incidence for men continues to increase, perhaps showing a slight tendency towards deceleration in the most recent decade. A measurable long-term mitigating effect of the Danish ban on asbestos products  has not yet occurred.

The original Danish study appeared in the Danish Medical Journal. (Skammeritz, E, et al, “Regional difference in incidence of malignant mesothelioma in Denmark“, March 2013, Danish Medical Journal.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23484611

The Mesothelioma Research Foundation of America has brought readers the most important and ground-breaking news on the causes, diagnosis and treatment of mesothelioma. All Surviving Mesothelioma news is gathered and reported directly from the peer-reviewed medical literature. Written for patients and their loved ones, Surviving Mesothelioma news helps families make more informed decisions.

Related Mesothelioma Cancer Press Releases

New Drug Targets Cancer Caused By Asbestos

May 26, 2014

Mesothelioma lung cancer can come to those persons who loved, and simply hugged their parent who worked around asbestos.  For example, now at age 45, Heather Von St. James recalls her father working as a building demolition employee around materials containing asbestos.  He would return home each day thoroughly covered by dirt and dust. She remembers how much she enjoyed hugging her father each night.mesothelioma-studies

By age 36, Heather was diagnosed with mesothelioma, the deadly yet to be cured cancer connected with exposure to asbestos particles.  Mesothelioma can take decades to develop and it often kills within months after symptoms appear. Heather was a new mother to a 3-month-old daughter, and she was told her only chance to live was by having a lung removed.

In 2013, more than 107,000 people died worldwide from mesothelioma.  However, Heather opted for the surgery instead, and removed the disease in time to stay alive.   According to Ms. St. James, “There’s a lot of people who don’t.”

Fortunately for other people with mesothelioma, or those that will discover they have the deadly disease, a new wave of drugs developed and being tested are giving new hope that mesothelioma cancer may be slowed or stopped.  Drug researchers, like Verastem Inc. (VSTM), GlaxoSmithKline Plc (GSK), and Dr. Parkash Gill of the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center have announced that they are testing new cancer fighting drugs.

According to Dean Fennell, a lead researcher doing a trial study with a new drug by Verastem:

“[Mesothelioma] is not a curable cancer; it’s not a disease that can be wiped out completely by surgery as you see with lung cancer. Finding ways to stop that process or slow it down can have big implications for patient survival.”

Unlike lung cancers, Mesothelioma affects the cell tissues that cover the lungs.  It can also affect the tissues around the heart and abdominal organs.  Like all cancers, mesothelioma is treated by doctors with cutting the cancer tissue out, or irradiating it, but both methods sometimes have dangerous side effects.

New Drugs Offer New Hope to Replace Old Treatments

Verastem (based out of Cambridge, Massachusetts) has developed a drug (VS-6063) that is now in late-stage human testing. Consecutively, Glaxo (based out of London) has a compound that is being tried in combination with another product in an early-stage study. The drugs from these two companies each target an enzyme involved in cell movement that permits the cancer to spread.

The enzyme is a key marker of aggressive cancers and is overabundant in many tumors that spread quickly. Also, patients with an inactive gene called Neurofibromatosis 2 (NF2) respond well to the test drugs being developed where nearly half of mesothelioma patients have inactive NF2s.

In the U.S. and Europe, the VS-6063 treatment has been granted orphan drug status.  This means that Verastem with their VS-6063 product is given seven (7) years of exclusive marketing.  A Bloomberg report states that according to four (4) analysts, the VS-6063 drug could possibly generate $450 million in sales by 2019 if the product is cleared for public use.

Earliest Stage

Defactinib is the medicine that targets early stage cancer stem cells.  These are considered to be theorigin of the cancer and frequently are resistant to existing therapies.   The cancer stem cells for mesothelioma are known to be particularly resistant to chemotherapy.

Now, Mr. Dean Fennell does not have an economic connection with Verastem, nor is he a paid consultant to the company.  And yet, Mr. Fennell (who is chairman of thoracic medical oncology at the University of Leicester in England) stated during an interview:

“The hope is we can suppress the cancer in such a way that it becomes a more chronic disease, rather than have a disease that’s going to progress relentlessly and kill the patient”

Verastem with a market value of about $215 million is developing the drug assisted by several renowned pharmaceutical companies providing guidance. The development team includes former Genzyme Corp. CEO Henri Termeer; Human Genome Project leader Eric Lander; and Phillip Sharp, a Nobel laureate at Biogen Idec Inc.

Other Drug Combinations

Under a license from Pfizer Inc., AstraZeneca Plc of London is testing a drug called tremelimumab, on mesothelioma in a mid-stage trial. The treatment works differently from the other developmental drugs in that it helps the patient’s immune system to recognize and kill cancer cells.  According to

Carolyn Buser-Doepner (VP for tumor signaling at Glaxo, the U.K.’s biggest drugmaker), there are plans to combine a new drug GSK2256098 with some other medicines to potentially make cancer treatments more effective.  In one early-stage trial, it will be paired up with Glaxo’s Mekinist, which is approved for melanoma.  She said, “The pre-clinical data are very encouraging. We’re very excited about it.”

Boehringer’s Drug

A fourth drug, nintedanib from Germany’s Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH, is in early-stage testing for mesothelioma, according to a spokesman. Unlike the previous mentioned medicines, this one works by targeting proteins directly related to the formation of blood vessels that feed tumors.

According to the director of research at the British Lung Foundation, Noel Snell, the kind of research studies most likely to yield improvements in cancer care are those that investigate the nature of the disease itself.  Still, treatments being tested today on mesothelioma are most encouraging.

Snell said in a statement:

“It is shameful that this kind of fundamental research remains so drastically underfunded, and that the number of trials available for mesothelioma patients is still dwarfed so dramatically by the number available to other cancer patients.”

Dr. Gill and EphB4 Treatment

For several years, Dr. Parkash Gill of the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center has proceeded with Phase I Clinical Trials with the new cancer fighting drug Eph-B4 made available to qualifying mesothelioma patients. With generous support from the Mesothelioma Research
Foundation of America
, the initial Phase I Trial Eph-B4 has been available to newly diagnosed patients who have not Ask Dr. Gill about the most recent clinical trials avaialbleundergone any conventional lung cancer treatment options, as well as those patients who have exhausted all other treatment options such as surgery and chemotherapy.

The results of these recent clinical trials have truly been exciting as Dr. Gill reports that Eph-B4 is showing great promise as a solo treatment, or in conjunction with other drugs like Alimta, Cisplatin and Carboplatin.

The research of Dr. Gill, in conjunction with similar studies by other Oncologists, have improved the understanding among Primary Care physicians about the detection process, and given them better options to offer patients with lung cancer including mesothelioma.

Eph-B4 as a Better Treatment

Treatments have also gotten better because we now understand two principles: a)molecular changes in lung cancer with very specific mutations; and b)medication (like Eph-B4) that is specific to addressing the treatment of only one cellular abnormality.

As Dr. Gill with the Mesothelioma Research Foundation of America continues the goal to make mesothelioma a disease of the past, our understanding of the human body immune system has also improved.    From this we have Eph-B4, an immune specific treatment that assists a patient with lung cancer to live longer with fewer side effects.

His studies have contributed to the evolution of mesothelioma cancer research over the last decade.  Collectively, researchers are producing a canonical story in which the range of research works has grown a consensus among recognized oncologists and Primary Care physicians of a “great” or “major” break through with the two principles mentioned above.  Basically, we can now identify subsets of cancer in a patient at the molecular level and bring a retardant treatment (immunity) to that cancer in those patients.  And this observation continues to this day to be repeated by many research projects.  More than ever before, researchers continue to identify specific cancer mutations and use similar drugs to shut down these cancers and improve patient survival.

Asbestos: The Miracle Fiber That Kills

Asbestos was named the “miracle fiber,” but has become the topic and issue of many lawsuits claiming losses as well as damages from illness caused by asbestos products.  It was commonly used in building materials such as insulation for years because it was cheap, abundant and heat-resistant.

Many countries have banned asbestos mining.  However, the World Health Organization estimates that as many as 125 million people worldwide continue to be exposed to asbestos either at work or in their homes because it continues to be mined and made into  products from in RussiaChina and India.

Unfortunately, mesothelioma cancer can lay dormant for as long as 50 years before spreading, which explains why rates have risen long after many countries have banned the asbestos.

New cases of mesothelioma cancer in the United Kingdom, where asbestos was restricted starting in the 1980s and outlawed fully in 2006, were 2,125 in 2012.  These numbers are expected to peak in 2015.  In the United States, the number of new cancer cases has been stable, hovering around 3,000 per year since 2000.  This stability was expected because of extensive efforts put into public education.  Still, a complete ban of Asbestos in the U.S. was overturned in the courts.  One of the world’s largest asbestos exporters, Canada, closed its remaining mines in 2011.

An Asian Asbestos Mesothelioma Cancer ‘Tsunami’

In Japan, asbestos was banned in 2006, the Japanese government pays the full cost of treatment for related illnesses, and rate of new cases of cancer are predicted to continue rising until 2027.  The director of a World Health Organization occupational health group, Ken Takahashi, has warned Asian governments to prepare themselves for an “asbestos tsunami.”

Again, Dean Fennell reminds us:

 “In the early ’70s, this was an incredibly rare disease. Now my clinic is full of patients with mesothelioma. Because the rates are increasing, we have a real need now to identify effective treatment.”

A cure for mesothelioma can not be found fast enough.  Still, there are survivors like Heather Von St. James, who breaths with great effort during Minnesota winters with her one remaining lung, and she volunteers her time to be a coach to other mesothelioma patients.   By her personal experience with mesothelioma, she wants other victims of mesothelioma to understand:

 “If they can keep it under control,
that’s the first hope.”

 

Useful Mesothelioma Information To Know

Mesothelioma is a rare form tumor cancer.  It refers to the cancerous tumor which primarily involves the mesothelial cells of the human organs, usually abdominal organs or lungs. Since most mesothelioma cancer cases are unsuccessful, it is just important to know some mesothelioma information to make sure you are not afflicted with this threatening disease.

Pleural mesothelioma is the common type of mesothelioma disease . This mesothelioma cancer strikes the pleura which is the membrane between the lungs and the chest cavity.  A lubricated surface to prevent the lungs from chaffing against the chest walls is provided by the membrane.  So, a pleural mesothelioma attack is also known as lung cancer.

Another form of mesothelioma cancer that frequently occurs is called  peritoneal mesothelioma. This cancer afflicts the peritoneum membrane which  encloses the abdomen organs.  Although peritoneal mesothelioma does not  occur as commonly as Pleural mesothelioma, it does tends to be more threatening and invasive.  Therefore, this may result in a shorter life period for the patient.

Mesothelioma Information – Brief History

Where does mesothelioma come from?  This is the most common question asked by persons diagnosed with mesothelioma.  The most common short  answer: exposure to airborne asbestos particles.  When a person is diagnosed this disease,  the cancer’s onset is usually found to be related to a history of asbestos exposure. Asbestos is a mineral, mined and used for many decades as a main thermal insulation material.  Since the 1920’s, it has been widely known that asbestos is a carcinogen, which can cause cancer. Still, asbestos continued to be used in many products until the early part of 1970, and consequently is found currently in many buildings today.60,000 die of asbestos mesothelioma

A unique feature of various asbestos caused diseases is that they have a long latency period.  In other words, from the day of exposure to asbestos fibers and breathing the asbestos dust and the noticeable onset of the cancerous disease can take many years.  A common latency period for mesothelioma cancer can be 20 to 50 years, and sometimes more time.  Therefore, a person can be exposed to asbestos many years ago and only now begin to show the development and signs of mesothelioma.

Clinical Signs and Symptoms of Mesothelioma

With mesothelioma, the signs and symptoms for this cancer can be very general, and unfortunately doctors have misdiagnosed and often neglected and ignored the signs.  In many cases, the signs and symptoms for this cancer type arise between 2 and 3 months before the cancer is fully diagnosed.

Making decisions about what to do with mesothelioma cancer is greatly dependent upon which stage the tumor is at upon discovery.  When you have an early diagnosis of mesothelioma than surgical intervention can sometimes prolong life expectancy.  Depending on the patient’s physical condition and age, the option for surgery may not be possible.  In addition to the option for surgery, then chemotherapy and radiation treatment may be useful in the treatment of mesothelioma.  Finally, home care and pain reduction options are common alternatives and considerations during the later stages of mesothelioma cancer before death.

Where To Go After A Diagnosis with Mesothelioma?

When a person has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, it becomes most important to understand and know the medical treatment options available for the patient.  Always contact and ask questions with an oncologist, or at least your personal doctor so they can provide you with information about mesothelioma as well as some treatment options to choose from.

If you need to speak with an oncologist, Dr. Gill with the Mesothelioma Research Foundation of America welcomes your questions and will gladly provide answers for free.  Simply click on this link and use this contact form to send the doctor your concern.

Vacuum Cleaner Theft Sparks Asbestos Fears

Asbestos Fears Sparked By Vacuum Cleaner Theft

Police from Great Britain  are asking the public to help find a stolen industrial vacuum cleaner which was used to suck up and remove asbestos.  According to BBC reports, thieves broke into a construction site under renovation over the weekend in the town of Carlisle, northern England.  After moving five vacuum cleaners into another room, the robbers chose to steal a yellow Numatic cleaner.  Unfortunately,  anyone coming in contact with that cleaner will now face serious health risks  and is advised not to touch the unit because it contains asbestos.  Just three years previously, a  situation just like this occurred when burglars stole a batch of industrial vacuums from Redcar & Cleveland College in Northeast England.  According to the BBC, the police responded by releasing a warning to the public that told them not to purchase the cleaners if they were offered them.

Asbestos is Cause for Extreme CautionAsbestos is Cause for Extreme Caution Danger

When it comes to asbestos, the cause for extreme caution is warranted. According to the U.S. National Cancer Institute, there is no recognized safe level of asbestos exposure.  Inhalation of the fibrous mineral causes serious illnesses, including asbestosis, cancers of the lungs and other organs, and mesothelioma.  Asbestos is present in many older buildings in the United Kingdom and the United States.  Versatile, cheap, and flame-retardant, the fibrous mineral was used extensively in building materials until about 1980, when the dangers of inhaling the material became widely known.  Because asbestos-related diseases such as mesothelioma take decades to develop, thousands of people were exposed to the material while working on job sites.  Have you been diagnosed with mesothelioma or any other asbestos-related condition?  Do you believe you were exposed to asbestos at a job site?  Then you may be interested in having your questions about asbestos exposure and the possibility of having mesothelioma answered by Dr. Gill, here at the Mesothelioma Research Foundation of America

 

 

North Ireland Deaths From Mesothelioma and Asbestosis in 2012

Asbestosis Big Problem in Northern Ireland

Asbestosis Lung

 

The Northern Ireland General Register Office, the province’s record keeper, said that mesothelioma and asbestosis were the primary or secondary causes of some 75 deaths annually.

In little more than five years, there have been more than 300 estimated deaths in Northern Ireland from asbestos exposure, according to a U.TV article, citing a recent government report.

This government report also suggests  there were possibly another 40 lung cancer deaths each year where asbestosis or mesothelioma were contributing factors.  Mesothelioma is a rare and deadly disease that destroys the linings of the heart, lungs or abdomen.  Exposure to asbestos is nearly always the cause of mesothelioma.  And asbestosis is specifically a lung disease caused by inhaling asbestos.

The situation is serious were unlike the United States which phased out asbestos in building materials in the 1980s, asbestos continued to be used in Northern Ireland until about 2000. The Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) organization predicts the current number of deaths to rise.  It has organized free training called “Asbestos Training Pledge NI” as a response to help local construction workers protect themselves from asbestos exposure.

Asbestos is a fibrous mineral once used extensively in building materials because of its high tensile strength, durability, high availability, and low cost.   Given its’ early widespread adoption in the United States, asbestos continues to be a problem there as well.  Since the 1970s,  research has linked asbestos exposure definitively to multiple painful and deadly diseases, such as mesothelioma.

Many manufacturers knew their asbestos products posed serious health risks, but some hid this information from both their workers and the public. Have you or a loved one developed mesothelioma after exposure to asbestos while at a workplace?  If so, then call a Lawyer who is an expert in Mesothelioma and Asbestosis, and ask them for a free legal consultation about a potential mesothelioma lawsuit.

More Mesothelioma and Asbestosis Information

 

Fighting the Asbestos fibrous hazard

Asbestos fibrous hazard

The World Health Organization (WHO)  has classified asbestos as a “carcinogen” which causes lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis.

“Instead of going about it in phases, India needs to completely ban mining, trade, manufacturing and use of all forms of asbestos-based products,” …

Asbestos banning

Given the health hazards that asbestos poses and the fact that International Maritime Organisation (IMO), of which India is a member state since 1959, has banned installation of all types of asbestos-containing materials as of January 1, 2011, activists have expressed “shock and surprise” over India’s willingness to accept use of asbestos in the aircraft carrier’s insulation in the boiler section.

“Though India has banned mining of asbestos, its use has not been completely stopped. Chrysotile, the most common form of asbestos, is a fibrous substance which is mixed with cement to create a fire-retardant mixture that is applied to corrugated sheets and pipes.”

Read more on The Hindu

Asbestos World Health Organization

More about asbestos products:

http://www.mesorfa.info/mesothelioma-risk-increases-along-with-consumption-of-asbestos-products/

REVIEW: WHAT IS MESOTHELIOMA?

MESOTHELIOMA: What is it?

Mesothelioma is a rare kind of malignant cancer that arises from the cells, lining the sacs of the chest (the pleura) or the abdomen (the peritoneum). Pleural mesothelioma is the most common type usually creating symptoms within the chest space. Peritoneal mesothelioma is not common which affects the organs within the abdomen with symptoms that are associated with this body space including abdominal swelling, nausea, vomiting, and bowel obstruction. The rarest form of mesothelioma cancer is pericardial mesothelioma which involves the sac surrounding the guts.  Based on the shape of the mesothelioma cells, the specific type of mesothelioma can be diagnosed.  There are three kinds of mesothelioma cells:  epithelioid, sarcomatoid and biphasic.mesothelioma-symptoms

MESOTHELIOMA: What Are The Causes?

Exposure to asbestos particles is the primary cause for mesothelioma cancer.  A person can get exposed by inhaling or ingesting asbestos fibers, which usually become airborne when asbestos-containing materials are disturbed as in broken for removal.  When microscopic fibers are inhaled, they’ll become lodged within the lining of the lungs and these stuck fibers fester for 15-40 years until they become recognized as pleural mesothelioma.  When asbestos is ingested, the fibers will become lodged within the lining of the abdomen and eventually cause  peritoneal mesothelioma.

MESOTHELIOMA: What Are The Symptoms?

The symptoms for mesothelioma cancer vary depending on the type and the cancer’s location.   Because the various forms of the cancer are similarity, several symptoms are common and overlapping. Many patients with mesothelioma will experience shortness of breath and general fatigue.  Additionally, acute pain can occur within the chest for patients with pleural and pericardial mesothelioma, and within the abdominal region for patients with peritoneal mesothelioma.

MESOTHELIOMA: What Are The Treatments?

There are several kinds of treatment for patients with malignant mesothelioma, and sometimes they are used in combinations of two or a lot of of those are combined within the course of treatment.

  • Surgery: a pleurectomy is the surgical removal of part of the chest or abdomen lining and some of the tissues around it.  Sometimes when the mesothelioma cancer has consumed too much tissue, a lung may also be removed in an operation known as a pneumonectomy.
  • Radiation Therapy: using high-dose X-rays or alternative high-energy rays to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. Two types of radiation therapy include: external radiation where a machine outside the body is used, and internal radiation using radioisotopes where putting materials that turn out radiation through skinny tubes inserted into the body space where the cancer cells are located.
  • Chemotherapy:  using chemotherapeutic agents as medication to fight the cancer.  These drugs are administered in one of two ways; 1)systemically through the bloodstream or 2)intrapleurally in the pleural cavity.  When it’s administered intrapleurally, the treatment is localized at the location of the tumor. Some of these medication are very toxic, so you must discuss their use thoroughly with your doctor.
  • Clinical Trials of new treatments, some non-chemotherapy.

To learn more about mesothelioma cure research and discuss clinical trial options with Dr. Gill.

Related Mesothelioma Articles

The Truth about Mesothelioma Symptoms

Mesothelioma symptoms can vary from patient to patient.

mesothelioma symptomsOne can make a valiant effort to possibly live through this dreaded disease by trying to understand its symptoms and how to detect it as early as possible.

What exactly is mesothelioma?

This is a type of cancer that affects the lining of various internal organs; including the lungs, heart, and abdominal cavity. This type of cancer is sometimes caused by exposure to a type of insulating material called asbestos.

Mesothelioma symptoms may not start for years, or even decades, after one is exposed to this toxic material.

How can a person tell if they have mesothelioma symptoms?

Only a doctor can diagnose mesothelioma. Mesothelioma symptoms are varied and they can often be confused with symptoms of many other illnesses. Mesothelioma symptoms may include shortness of breath, a mass in the abdominal region, fever, night sweats, a general feeling of illness, and many other symptoms that should be discussed with a medical professional. Often mesothelioma attorneys educate their clients that some of the symptoms they may have believed to be something else are actually attributable to this illness.

Why is it so hard to diagnose mesothelioma symptomss?

Mesothelioma symptoms can be extremely inconsistent, which can lead to a host of incorrect diagnoses and misunderstandings.

Far too often a person will have no mesothelioma symptoms for years after exposure, which is due to the fact that mesothelioma grows slowly within a person’s body. This can lead to potential treatment time not being utilized.

What can be done about mesothelioma?

Medical professionals are constantly working on newer and better ways to treat every kind of illness, but thus far there have been few breakthroughs. Some of the most promising discoveries are found in the research and clinical studies by Dr. Gill.  In recent years, a lot of non-medical work has been done with regard to this illness like mesothelioma attorneys mounting cases against the asbestos manufacturing industry, which hid vital information about the potential dangers of asbestos exposure. Tens of millions of individuals may have been exposed, which could potentially lead to large numbers of mesothelioma cases.

Where can I find more information about mesothelioma symptoms?

Additional mesothelioma symptoms information is available here and at www.mesorfa.org our central research center web site.

Related Mesothelioma Articles

Mesothelioma Treatment Options – asbestos causes mesothelioma cancer

Mesothelioma Treatment Option – cancer mesothelioma asbestos

Mesothelioma is a cancer which affects the tissue which surrounds and protects various organs in the body. This tissue is called the Mesothelium, and Mesothelioma causes it to become abnormal, divide without control, and invade and damage nearby organs.

The most common form is pleural mesothelioma which affects the sac that lines the chest cavity and protects the lungs (the pleura). Other forms are peritoneum mesothelioma (which affects the abdominal cavity) and pericardium mesothelioma (affecting the lining around the heart). The tumours can be either benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancerous) although they are most often malignant.

Mesothelioma Causes

Mesothelioma is caused by the inhalation of asbestos, a fibrous carcinogenic.

These fibres lodge themselves in the lining of the lung affecting the mesothelial cells. Sometimes they cause scarring of the lungs (which is called asbestosis) but this is not cancerous. They can, however, trigger tumour growth between 20 to 50 years after they are inhaled (the average is 35 to 40 years). Asbestos fibres which are swallowed can reach the lining of the abdominal cavity where they play a part in causing peritoneal mesothelioma.

It is generally the case that the longer or more intense the exposure to asbestos the more likely Mesothelioma is to occur. However, there are cases of people getting Mesothelioma years after having worked with it for just a few months. The families of asbestos workers are also at risk as they would possibly have been exposed to asbestos fibres on the clothing of their loved ones.

The dangers of asbestos have not always been as well known as they are today.  Before the 1970s asbestos was a primary insulating material with little or no control in its use or handling. The resulting increase in cases of Mesothelioma is a direct cause of these past practices.

Mesothelioma Symptoms

Mesothelioma is often well advanced before symptoms are recognized.   Consequently, the prognosis for the disease is usually poor with the common survival time for all stages of Malignant Mesothelioma being about one year.  Mesothelioma symptoms resemble pneumonia, which coughs, breathing difficulties and abdominal pain being common.

Mesothelioma Treatments

Mesothelioma can be treated by chemotherapy, radiotherapy or surgery, or a combination of the three.

  • Mesothelioma Surgery Treatment

Extra pleural pneumonectomy is where the entire lung and a portion of the lining of the chest, the diaphragm, and some or the entire sac which surrounds the heart is removed.

Wide local excision targets and removes the cancer and a limited amount of the healthy tissue surrounding the cancerous region.

Pleurectomy and decortication removes part of the covering of the lungs, as well as the lining of the chest and portions of the outside covering of the lungs.

  • Mesothelioma Chemotherapy Treatment

Pleurodesis uses a blend of chemicals and/or drugs to create an intentional scar between the layers of the pleura. Post surgery, the space created by the scar must be drained, using either a catheter or chest tube, and is then filled with a chemical which inhibits the accumulation of fluid in the pleura cavity.

  • Mesothelioma Radiation Treatment

Radiation therapy is used to treat Mesothelioma patients with the goal of controlling the spread of cancer in combination with surgery and chemotherapy. Radiation emanates from high energy X-rays, photons, neutrons, cobalt, or other radiation sources. Chemotherapy and Radiation treatments are useful ways to combat other types of cancers but, used alone, have not been very helpful for treating Mesothelioma.

Research continues as the medical field looks for a cure.  Different combinations of drugs and surgery, studies of newly developed drugs, gene therapy, and more are being studied, with clinical trials in the United States and abroad.

Prognosis for mesothelioma is difficult to estimate consistently when looking at different research studies because there are often large differences in the time before diagnosis and the rate of disease progression.  Many factors affect a person’s prognosis, including the type of disease, a person’s age and general health, when the disease was found, and a person’s response to treatment.

 Patients may want to think about taking part in a clinical trial.

For some patients, taking part in a mesothelioma clinical trial may be the best treatment choice.  Mesothelioma clinical trials are part of the cancer research process.  Clinical trials are done to find out if new cancer treatments are safe and effective or better than the standard treatment.

Many of today’s standard treatments for mesothelioma cancer are based on previous, earlier clinical trials.  Patients who take part in a clinical trial may receive the standard treatment or be among the first to receive a new mesothelioma treatment.

Patients who take part in clinical trials also help improve the way cancer will be treated in the future. Even when clinical trials do not lead to effective new treatments, they often answer important questions and help move research forward.


Learn more about Mesothelioma, Asbestos, Symptoms and Treatments

Burglar Inhaled Asbestos Fibers During Theft Leading To Mesothelioma Cancer

symptoms of asbestos exposureA burglar may have gotten more than he bargained for when he entered a building that was under renovation, intent on stealing tools left behind by the contractors doing the renovation work. What the bandit didn’t realize, however, was that the house on James Street in Syracuse, NY was filled with airborne asbestos.

According to the Syracuse Post-Standard New York Newspaper, the criminal – whose name was not released – gained access to the building by knocking a 3 foot by 3 foot hole in a brick wall. A police report stated that he most likely didn’t observe the warning signs that were placed around the structure noting that asbestos removal was taking place inside. The doors and windows were all boarded up with plywood.

Bill McHale, foreman for Conifer-LeChase Construction of Syracuse, NY, the company performing the asbestos abatement, told the media that there are safe areas and containment areas within the building, and it was evident that the robber had entered into a containment area after breaking into the house through the wall.  The police were told by Mr. McHale that the containment area is “extremely dangerous” and full of asbestos dust, and that the burglar has put his health at serious risk for having entered the asbestos dust part of the building.

While the burglar has escaped with several pieces of electric equipment, gas-powered equipment, ladders, scrap wire and copper, he probably inhaled significant portions of dangerous, sharp asbestos fibers, that may very well become imbedded in his lungs which eventually will cause mesothelioma cancer. Many people develop this cancer after years of exposure to the toxic mineral in the workplace, such as in factories and shipyards, but doctors and researchers have determined that even the smallest amount of asbestos exposure can lead to the development of cancerous tumors.