According to a report published in a Danish medical journal, certain home repairs can pose mesothelioma risks. The study – completed by researchers at Aarhus University Hospital in Slagelse, Denmark – based the study of published cases involving patients diagnosed with mesothelioma.
According to the study, both patients were found to have been exposed to asbestos while doing roof repairs. Each of the patients, who were homeowners, reported drilling and cutting into roof sheeting. Because the homes were manufactured prior to the 1980s, before the asbestos-containing materials were largely abandoned in construction, the roof sheeting contained asbestos. Neither of the patients had worked professions that posed risks of asbestos exposure.
The study highlights the risks of non-occupational asbestos exposure, especially for homeowners who perform do-it-yourself repairs or renovations in older homes. During these projects, homeowners can expose themselves to dust and harmful asbestos fibers when they cut, sand, drill, or disturb structures and products containing the material.
Researchers noted that the risks are more concerning for older individuals who performed home repairs in homes built before the 1980s. Current homeowners in older homes – especially those built during the 1930s to the 1960s – can also be exposed to asbestos. The most common home materials that may contain asbestos include:
Floor and ceiling tiles
Wall paints and joint compounds
Asbestos was widely used in home construction, as it was valued for its durability, low cost, and resistance to fire. Once the link between asbestos and mesothelioma became widely accepted, the construction industry abandoned the use of asbestos. Because the risk may still exist in older homes, experts recommend that homeowners who suspect that their homes may contain asbestos contact an abatement professional before doing any work themselves.
Nemeroff Law Firm fights for victims of asbestos exposure, no matter where the exposure occurred. If you have questions about non-occupational exposure to asbestos, mesothelioma, and your rights, contact our firm for a free case evaluation.