There are four distinct types of mesothelioma, with mesothelioma in the lungs among the most common.
Every year, there are approximately 2,500 to 3,000 new cases of pleural mesothelioma in the United States.
Accounting for about 75 percent of all new mesothelioma cases, doctors have a clear idea of the symptoms and causes of this form of the disease.
There are many symptoms associated with mesothelioma, but chest pain is the most common. This is often more of a concern when coughing.
Other symptoms include:
- Lumps under the skin on your chest
- Weight loss
- Shortness of breath
Causes of pleural mesothelioma
Asbestos exposure is the primary cause of mesothelioma. There was a time when this material was commonly used, however, that was before knowledge that exposure can cause mesothelioma.
When asbestos fibers get caught in your lungs, it can result in scarring and inflammation. Over time, it can also lead to mesothelioma.
How is it diagnosed?
If you have any concerns about mesothelioma, it’s critical to seek medical attention.
Your doctor can run a variety of tests, including but not limited to:
- CT scan
- PET scan
For example, a CT scan can pinpoint asbestos exposure while a PET scan can show if the cancer has spread.
If mesothelioma is suspected, your doctor will order a biopsy to determine exactly what’s going on.
There is no cure for mesothelioma, but there are several types of treatment that can help slow down the progression of the disease:
- Radiation therapy
If detected in its early stages, it’s possible to be cured of mesothelioma. In later stages, your medical team will focus primarily on controlling the progression of the disease and minimizing the impact on your health.
Unfortunately, the nature of the disease typically results in a late diagnosis, making it more difficult to cure.
If you’re diagnosed with mesothelioma, turn your attention to any asbestos exposure from your past. You may find that you worked in an industry in which exposure was common.
As you fight the disease, learn more about your legal rights in North Carolina. You may be able to take action against a negligent party, such as an employer, that put you at risk of developing the disease.