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What is Mesothelioma ? Reasons, Symptoms and Prevention

Updated on June 13, 2020

What is Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is a cancer type. It is lung cancer. This cancer is very rare. It occurs due to uncontrolled growth in mesothelium growth. The mesothelium is the protective lining that covers many of the internal body organs for humans. The most common anatomical site for this cancer is pleura. Pleura is the outer linings of lungs which are between the lungs and internal chest wall. Uncontrollable growth in this preventing lining cause this type of cancer.

Mesothelioma is rare and that is why it is very dangerous too. This hub is a measure to inform people about this dangerous cancer disease and let people know how can we prevent ourselves and others.

Reasons for Mesothelioma Cancer

Asbestos is the main reason for mesothelioma. People who have been exposed to asbestos have more chances to get this cancer. Workers, who have been in constant contact with asbestos fiber, inhaled asbestos, and/or comes in contact with airborne asbestos have more risk for developing mesothelioma.

Secondary exposure to asbestos fibers is also very dangerous. if you come in contact with clothes that have been exposed to asbestos fiber, then you will be having a greater risk of mesothelioma too. Secondary exposure includes asbestos fiber exposure to people who do not work directly in the asbestos environment.

Smoking does not seem to be the major reason for this type of cancer, but it greatly increases the effect of asbestos on the human body. So smoking may not be the direct player causing mesothelioma cancer but it plays a vital role in increasing role.

Asbestos Causes Cancer

Mesothelioma cancer explanation
Mesothelioma cancer explanation

Mesothelioma Symptoms

It is not easily recognizable cancer. Mostly a patient gets to know they have such cancer when they go to a doctor for some symptoms such as fever or shortness of breath. Its symptoms are not much intense, so a patient can easily ignore them as minor problems or as fever due to weather change. Most patients check further after having months of symptoms.

Below mentioned are some of the symptoms:

Symptoms for Chest (Lining of chest cancer):

  • Fever
  • Swallowing problem
  • The sudden drop in weight
  • Breath shortness
  • Lower back pain
  • Chest pain
  • Face swelling
  • Coughing
  • Sweating
  • Tiredness

The lining of the abdominal cavity includes these above symptoms as well as some additional symptoms mentioned below:

  • Swelling of belly
  • Vomiting
  • Belly Pain

All these symptoms mentioned above are the most common symptoms and anyone can take it as something minor. But if you are working in the asbestos environment or been exposed to asbestos then you should not take these symptoms lightly.

Keep in mind, these symptoms can be sometimes mild while in some cases very intense. So please do not ignore if you ever have such symptoms continuously and you had exposure to asbestos. Prevention is always the best cure.

Save yourself from Asbestos

Treatment Options

There are 4 types of treatment options for this very rare type of cancer.

Surgery, Chemotherapy, Radiation and Multimodal

The type of treatment a patient will get depends on the diagnosis. These treatment types can be broken into two parts: Curative and Palliative.

Curative treatments are mostly aimed to get cancer out of your body by surgery. If a patient's cancer tumor is not metastasizing then the doctor can suggest this option. Chemotherapy and radiations are other additional treatment options for such patients.

If a patient does not have an option for Curative treatment then doctors adopt Palliative treatment. In this type of treatment, doctors treat the patient to make them comfortable as they will live with cancer. Doctors will treat you to provide a comfortable life even though your cancer treatment is going on.

History of Treatment

This is rare cancer but it has been around for more than a century. The first case was reported in 1899. In 1931, cancer has been named Mesothelioma.

Although asbestos has been used for a long time, it is reasonable to think there were early Mesothelioma patients who were never documented. With increasing pollution in the environment, cancer cases are increasing day by day. Mesothelioma is rare and so not many doctors have practiced such cases. As it is a rare and complex nature, it is complicated to cure. Medical science is continuously working on providing fast and effective medicine for such cancer.

Survival Rate

Mesothelioma Survival Rate depends on various factors such as exposure time, treatment, and up to how far cancer got spread.

Usually, the survival rate is the rate of percentage of patients who survived for a particular time frame. It also includes what type of diagnosis a patient received and what other factors that can affect survival such as gender, age, surrounding environments, etc.

The survival rate is low. It is because of its complexity and its rareness. In the US, 40% of Mesothelioma patients survived for a year. So it is not incurable but proper care and medication needed for such cases.

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Spread your words and support

Mesothelioma is a very rare cancer and those patients need support. Overall cancer is a big decrease but many cancer types are curable nowadays. However, for Mesothelioma, the survival rate is low.

I urge all the workers to keep checking themselves and their family members on a regular basis if you come in contact with Asbestos. If you can find the start early you may have a better chance to survive.

This is an effort to spread words about Mesothelioma and asbestos danger.


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