Mesothelioma is an aggressive type of cancer that develops in the tissue covering the internal organs. This disease is often deadly, but treatments are available. There are several different types of mesothelioma. The condition is rare for most, but becomes much more common for those who have been exposed to asbestos.
Types of mesothelioma
Of the four types of mesothelioma, pleural is the most common. It affects the area surrounding the lungs. Peritoneal mesothelioma is cancer that affects the lining of the abdomen. The third type is pericardial mesothelioma, which affects the heart. One fourth type, tunica vaginalis mesothelioma, affects the testicles. It is incredibly rare. Each type is aggressive, and there is no known cure. However, treatment options have improved over the years to improve the patient's quality of life.
Signs and symptoms of mesothelioma
The symptoms of mesothelioma vary based on where the cancer has grown. For pleural mesothelioma, the symptoms include chest pain, deep and painful coughing, lower back pain, and shortness of breath. You may also feel for lumps of tissue that may rest right below the skin, or you may notice yourself rapidly losing weight.
Peritoneal mesothelioma comes with symptoms like pain and swelling of the stomach. You may feel a lump of tissue in your abdomen or experience weight loss you cannot explain otherwise. You might feel nauseous and begin vomiting regularly.
For those experiencing pericardial mesothelioma, the most common symptoms are short breath, chest pain, and difficulty inhaling. You may notice a lower than normal blood pressure as well as fluid retention.
Mesothelioma that affects the testicles produces massive swelling of the organs. You may even notice a growth emerging.
It is essential to make a doctor's appointment as soon as you notice signs of mesothelioma. They may be related to another condition, but quick treatment is essential no matter the case. This is especially true because the condition does not typically emerge until years or decades after exposure to asbestos.
Causes of mesothelioma
Prolonged exposure to asbestos is the most commonly accepted cause of mesothelioma. Most people who have mesothelioma have been exposed to asbestos, used for insulation, fireproofing, roofing, and more, through work. Exposure results in genetic mutations that cause cells to begin growing out of control. Even living with another person who works with asbestos can be a risk factor. Individuals with a family history of mesothelioma are at increased risk for the condition.
The impact of mesothelioma can be devastating on one's life. The side effects of the condition can make it difficult to complete many everyday tasks, even getting to doctor's appointments. Medical treatments can be costly, which is why so many people seek damages to pay their medical bills following a mesothelioma diagnosis.
An attorney can help you understand your rights and legal options if you or a loved one has been exposed to asbestos or diagnosed with mesothelioma.