Mesothelioma cancer is one of the hardest diseases to overcome, and its causes are often from lack of company compliance to standard health precautions. Specifically, asbestos exposure is a known cause of this type of cancer. If you or a loved one believe asbestos exposure caused your disease, you are in the right place to find out more about asbestos-related diseases.
Mesothelioma Cancer: Types, Stages, Treatment, and Asbestos Exposure
This cancer develops from asbestos particles that are inhaled or ingested and penetrate the lining around certain organs. This lining is called the mesothelium. The presence of asbestos particles in the mesothelium damages the targeted cell’s DNA, leading to the spread of cancerous cells in the body.
Types of Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma may occur in the mesothelium of the heart, the lungs, the testes, or the abdominal cavity. When asbestos particles enter the body, they can penetrate the mesothelium of these organs, causing the following types of cancers:
- Pleural mesothelioma, found in the lining of the lungs;
- Pericardial mesothelioma, found in the lining of the heart;
- Peritoneal mesothelioma, found in the abdominal cavity; and
- Testicular mesothelioma, found in the testes.
The most common of these cancers is pleural mesothelioma, which is responsible for 70 to 90 percent of all cases.
What are the Possible Treatments of Mesothelioma Cancer?
There are different treatment options for mesothelioma based on the particular type and stage of the cancer. The most common treatments that may result in the patient’s remission are the following:
- Surgery, which is particularly effective for patients in the early stages of mesothelioma, while in later stages it’s used to relive pain;
- Chemotherapy, a non-surgical option that is often paired with another choice of treatment and, in many cancers, has been shown to improve the survival rate; or
- Radiation, used to damage or even kill the cancerous cells, preventing them from further metastasizing.
Doctors may also propose clinical trials as treatment for patents interested in volunteering for the research community. Often, specialists may combine more than one treatment method for a patient.
What are the Stages of Mesothelioma?
Part of diagnosing a patient with mesothelioma is determining the cancer’s stage, often through X-rays and CT scans. The four possible stages are as follows:
- Stage 1: Localized cancer cells are present. Since no metastasis has occurred, surgery could be an option.
- Stage 2: The cancer has grown compared to stage one and the lymph system is partially involved.
- Stage 3: The tumor has spread to nearby organs. The delocalized cancer cells suggest a non-surgical treatment.
- Stage 4: The cancer has spread throughout the lymphatic system, blood vessels, and throughout various organs. Generally, the treatment choices are radiation and chemotherapy.
Unfortunately, asbestos-related cancer is seldom caught in its early stages because its noticeable symptoms develop late.
Asbestos, the most common cause for any mesothelioma, is routinely found in insulating, fireproofing, or electrical materials. The particles that make up these common construction resources are not harmful unless disturbed and released into the air.
The workplace is the most common place to come across asbestos, particularly for carpenters, firefighters, and asbestos miners. Individuals who encounter asbestos in their work can carry the cancer-causing particles in their hair or on their clothes, endangering those around them through secondhand exposure. In addition, cases have shown that living near asbestos mines may cause this disease.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma and you believe the reason for your mesothelioma was caused by asbestos exposure, talk to a mesothelioma cancer lawyer at Nemeroff Law Firm to learn about your legal rights. Contact our office or fill in your information on our website for a free and confidential mesothelioma case evaluation. We’re here to protect your rights.