What is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is a rare cancer caused from exposure to asbestos. This cancer has a long latency period of 20 – 50 years, which makes about majority of those suffering senior citizens. We all know that seniors are more prone to illness than their younger peers, but with mesothelioma it is a bit different. The average age when mesothelioma is detected in a person is 72 and over 80% of sufferers are classified as senior citizens.
Asbestos is a mineral that was prized for its resistance to heat. Companies began using asbestos in virtually anything to make their products fire-proof. Unfortunately, as the harmful effects of asbestos became known, many of these companies did not stop cease using it. It wasn’t until regulations were put in place in the late 1970’s, restricting the use of asbestos, that changes were made. At that point, many people were wrongfully exposed and are still paying the consequences.
Who’s at Risk?
In addition to the senior demographic, those most at risk of developing mesothelioma likely worked in a job that was around asbestos or served in the military. Jobs like construction workers, firefighters, and plumbers had and still have a risk of asbestos exposure. Veterans are considered one of the largest demographics of mesothelioma sufferers because of the military’s reliance on asbestos. The Armed Forces primarily used asbestos in the vehicles and aircraft, but due to the close quarters and its prominence on ships, Navy veterans are at the highest risk.
The treatment options for mesothelioma include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, or a multimodal approach that combines 2 or more approaches. Surgery is considered the best strategy if the cancer is caught in the early stages and can improve the prognosis and quality of life. Chemotherapy has also been effective for patients who are not eligible for surgery, increasing their lifespan three-fold. Radiation is also an option. It can be by itself or paired with another, and is best for symptoms of pain and discomfort.
Where to Find Help?
If you are concerned for yourself or a loved one, it is best to seek help as soon as possible. The Mesothelioma Center is a completely free resource and service center for people suffering from this terrible disease. They not only offer the most reliable information on everything asbestos and mesothelioma, but they also have staff that work for your needs.
Many mesothelioma sufferers even qualify for money due to the wrongful manufacturing of asbestos products by companies. Billions of dollars have been put into an asbestos trust fund for those who are unfairly paying the consequences and The Mesothelioma Center can help patients access their rightful piece.
Their Patient Advocates can help you through the process of seeking treatment or support groups, and can answer any questions you may have. They can be reached by phone or email: [email protected] (800) 615 – 2270