Have you recently been diagnosed with mesothelioma? Has someone you love been diagnosed with mesothelioma? If so, there is likely a reason why, and there is likely something that you can do about it.
Over 80 percent of mesothelioma cases have been linked to dangerous levels of exposure to asbestos, a mineral material that was once commonly used in construction, manufacturing, and other industrial fields.
When asbestos is mined, processed, or otherwise disturbed, it releases tiny, microscopically thin mineral fibers into the air. These fibers, when inhaled or swallowed, do not decompose naturally in the body. Instead, they lodge in the mesothelium, the lining of the body’s cavities. Over the course of decades, continued irritation by the asbestos fibers causes cell mutation, which causes cancer: mesothelioma. This long process of irritation is why mesothelioma is often only diagnosed many years—often as long as 40 years—after exposure to asbestos.
Tragically, this is also the main reason why mesothelioma does not have a high rate of survival, as the disease is often not detected until it is significantly advanced. The average 5-year survival rate is currently between 5-10%, with over 3,000 new cases diagnosed in the U.S. each year (and nearly 31,000 cases worldwide).
The vast majority of mesothelioma cases can be linked to prolonged exposure to asbestos over time, making asbestos exposure the main risk factor for mesothelioma.