Mesothelioma is a health problem that affects body cavities such as the abdomen and chest. Most mesothelioma infections begin in the chest cavity, but they can also start in the core and a few around the heart. According to Mesothelioma veterans, the mesothelioma survival rates are minimal due to the late stage of its diagnosis and the complexity of the surgery. Most of the patients whose lungs are affected by cancer die from failure of the respiratory system.
There are various risks of developing mesothelioma. The risk factors that influence the chances of the development of cancer do not necessarily cause cancer. It is essential to investigate your risk factors and discuss them with your physician to help you make informed health care and lifestyle choices. The following risk factors influence the development of mesothelioma;
Exposure to asbestos
Asbestos composes of natural minerals found on earth. It is strong, with fireproof properties and flexible fibers. Asbestos is a component in many construction materials such as roof shingles, cement, and insulation materials due to these properties. The microscopic fibers in asbestos are resistant to chemicals, heat, fire and do not conduct electricity. Suppose these fibers get released into the atmosphere while in the manufacturing process; they can be swallowed or inhaled, resulting in serious health issues. Research shows that people living with asbestos workers have a high risk of developing asbestos due to exposure to asbestos particles brought home on their clothes and hair. Mesothelioma cases are also reported among people living near asbestos mines.
Some findings have concluded that exposure to high doses of radiation to the abdomen or chest and injections of thorium dioxide used by some doctors in chest x rays caused mesotheliomas. There are increased chances when a patient previously received radiation therapy for lymphoma.
A small percentage of mesothelioma patients have inherited the disease from parents. Passing mesothelioma from parent to offspring is a result of gene mutation.
Although some people with mesothelioma have no known risk factors, many people with this type of cancer have been exposed to asbestos. Therefore, it is vital to follow safety precautions such as putting on protective gear when dealing with asbestos.
Signs of Mesothelioma
This type of cancer symptoms takes twenty to fifty years to appear after exposure to risk factors. The main signs of mesothelioma are chest pain and shortness of breath. Abdominal mesothelioma signs are swelling with a painful abdomen, anemia, weight loss, blood clotting abnormalities, and bowel obstruction. Where the disease has spread to other parts of the body, signs may include swelling of the neck or face and swallowing difficulties.
Several conditions share these symptoms, and therefore experiencing them does not necessarily mean that you have mesothelioma. It is vital to visit your doctor to determine the cause of symptoms since mesothelioma is often misdiagnosed.
Different tests for mesothelioma include blood tests, biopsies, imaging tests, fluid and tissue sample tests. Upon diagnosing the disease, the available treatment options include immunotherapy, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and surgery. The choice of treatment option varies depending on the prognosis that indicates the stage of cancer and how it affects other body organs.