Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that affects some people who have been exposed to asbestos. The cancer develops into a malignant tumor that is a direct result of inhaling asbestos fibers that scar the lungs, abdomen or heart.
Sadly, the life expectancy for those who develop mesothelioma is not very long. This is because mesothelioma is difficult to diagnose and may only be diagnosed once the patient is in the end stages.
What are the symptoms of mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma can be divided into four forms: pleural, peritoneal, testicular and pericardial. Depending on where the cancer develops, patients may have differing symptoms. Most patients suffer from pleural mesothelioma, which affects the mesothelium surrounding the lungs.
Some symptoms of pleural mesothelioma include:
- Painful coughing fits
- Shortness of breath
- Unexplained weight loss
- Chest pain
- Strange lumps under the skin on the chest
It is important to see a doctor right away if you find you’re having trouble breathing or have any of the above symptoms. They are symptoms that can be seen across many different diagnoses, but it is a good idea to see a doctor and have them determine a diagnosis.
Are you at risk of developing mesothelioma?
You may be at risk of developing mesothelioma if you’ve lived with someone who worked with asbestos. You may also be at risk if you have worked with asbestos or been exposed to asbestos. Radiation therapy to the chest and a family history of mesothelioma also increases your risk of developing the disease.
If you develop mesothelioma, your attorney may be able to help you seek compensation due to your exposure to asbestos.