Warning signs of malignant mesothelioma and symptoms are often difficult to attribute to a cancerous disease. In most cases, these symptoms do not present for up to 30-40 years after asbestos exposure. When symptoms happen, they can be mild at first and most people have no clue they are actual warning signs of a deadly disease. When early symptoms do develop, people will often mistake the warning signs for a cold, flu, or other less severe and common illnesses. It’s imperative though, to always listen to your body. If you’ve ever worked around asbestos or used products containing asbestos, do not ignore even the slightest hint of a cold. You should seek medical assistance immediately.
Don’t let the Common Cold Fool You
Most victims of asbestos-related illnesses do not know to seek help for a disease after the first symptoms arrive because their ailments closely mimic normal respiratory illnesses. To complicate matters even further, pleural mesothelioma victims are susceptible to to pneumonia. Instead of medical professionals and patients connecting the pneumonia as a mesothelioma symptom, they often are treated only for the pneumonia.
Since mesothelioma affects the lining of organs in the body, the symptoms vary and will be directly related to that area of the body. Some symptoms include: hacking, dry coughs, chest pain, the inability to fully expand the chest, coughing up blood, ascites, unusual weight loss, anemia, night sweats, tumors present in the testicles or ovarian tumors and cysts and many more. It could take up to four decades for these symptoms to become severe enough to warrant additional testing that will show more serious developments.
Timespan For Symptoms to Arrive
Mesothelioma research shows that most often it takes anywhere from 30 to 50 years after the asbestos exposure for the first mesothelioma symptoms to appear. This is true for all forms of mesothelioma, although studies are showing that symptoms for peritoneal mesothelioma tend to present slightly sooner, at anywhere from 20 to 30 years.
When to See a Doctor
Because mesothelioma symptoms mimic those of common respiratory ailments, most mesothelioma victims wait until they begin having severe symptoms before consulting with a physician. It is extremely important to educate yourself about mesothelioma and know that if you’ve been exposed to asbestos to get regularly tested for mesothelioma – most importantly letting your physician know your history so an accurate and early diagnosis can be made. Early detection is the biggest tool any victim of an asbestos-related illness has to fight a deadly diagnosis.