Mesothelioma is a rare yet deadly form of cancer, the only known cause of which is exposure to asbestos. Because of that fact, the truth is that mesothelioma is entirely preventable, and our hope is that educating the public about mesothelioma and asbestos exposure will help bring an end to this fatal disease.
Did you know that asbestos is the largest cause of occupational cancer in the United States, and that we still import tons of this lethal material? What’s more, it doesn’t take much asbestos exposure to inhale or ingest enough asbestos and start the process towards developing mesothelioma, asbestosis, or another asbestos-related disease like lung cancer. In fact, some mesothelioma patients are the wives of men who worked with asbestos, who brought the tiny, deadly fibers home on their clothing, skin, and hair. Just this limited amount of asbestos exposure was enough to lead to a mesothelioma diagnosis decades later.
Decades? That’s right: it is not usually until many decades (in some cases half a century) after asbestos exposure that most mesothelioma diagnoses occur, and by that time the disease is usually at a very advanced stage. This is why the survival rate for mesothelioma patients is so low: most patients die only about one year after being diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer.
While asbestos is not commonly used in construction today, many of our older buildings (including schools) were built with asbestos in their insulation, flooring, or roofing. In many cases, this asbestos is safely encapsulated. However, in older buildings it is not uncommon for asbestos components to become exposed. If you live or work in an older building and you suspect asbestos may be present, don’t try to remove the asbestos yourself. Always trust this job to an asbestos remediation specialist who has the protection and training necessary to safely remove the asbestos.
Mesothelioma is a truly devastating disease, and our intent is to educate the public about the disease and its causes so that we will see mesothelioma diagnoses decline in the future. To do your part, seek out knowledge about mesothelioma and how to limit asbestos exposure for yourself and your family.