My two elementary school kids have recently finished up school for the summer. Two weeks before school was out I spoke to one of their teachers who told me the entire school is to be remodeled during the summer. She said that along with constructing additional classrooms, the school was finally taking care of the asbestos problem. "Asbestos problem?" I asked. She said the ceiling had begun to fall in in some of the rooms and the school was concerned about the health of the students.
I was shocked to find out that there are still buildings in the United States that have asbestos in them (having heard all the publicity during the late 80's through the decade of the 90's about asbestos related diseases and death). Hasn't the school board heard of mesothelioma?
My wife, a travel nurse who also runs an online business selling nursing scrubs, was even more shocked than I was as she has seen the devastating effects of Mesothelioma first hand.
Asbestos And Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma is a disease primarily caused by exposure to asbestos. Asbestos contains tiny fibers that can be breathed into the lungs. Once the fibers are inhaled they travel through small air passages until they reach the mesothelial cells. The fibers then damage the cells which can result in injury to the lungs and even cancer.
Asbestos exposure is mostly, but not exclusively, occupational and about 6% of those who have worked with asbestos die from mesothelioma.
What Are The Symptoms
There are two general types of mesothelioma: pleural and peritoneal. More than half of patients with pleural mesothelioma experience pain in the lower back or at the side of the chest. Shortness of breath, weight loss, trouble swallowing, fatigue, coughing, fever and sweating can also be signs of mesothelioma. Other symptoms include hoarseness, coughing up blood, swelling of the face and arms, muscle weakness, and sensory loss.
Symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma include abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and weight loss.
What Can Be Done?
There are several conventional treatments for mesothelioma including surgery, radiation and chemotherapy. Remember, opting for one treatment may prevent you from undergoing the other treatments.
Contact An Attorney
You may be wondering why a discussion about mesothelioma is on a legal blog. As I previously mentioned, during the 80's and 90's the world became aware of the danger posed by asbestos. As the world became aware, lawsuits arose and legislation was passed dealing with compensating the victims of mesothelioma. You may also want to read Mesothelioma.