There was a time when people talked about cancer in hushed whispers and called it "the big C." Nowadays, it's difficult to meet anyone who doesn't know someone directly or through another person who currently suffers from or survived cancer.
Even so, some forms of cancer continue to be rare, which also means that they may not be curable. For example, even though the "powers that be" knew that asbestos caused harm to those who spent time around its dust and fibers, it took more time to realize that it also served as the primary cause for a rare form of cancer called mesothelioma, which to this day has no known cure.
Do you possess the greatest risk factor for mesothelioma?
If you are like many other Ohio residents who worked in textile mills, foundries or other industries that used asbestos on a regular basis, you already possess the greatest risk for mesothelioma. Researchers are fairly certain that the most common form of this rare cancer, pleural mesothelioma, results from asbestos exposure, most often in the workplace.
This is because when the fibers and dust from this toxic substance became airborne and you breathed them in, they may have remained in your lungs causing this condition decades after your exposure. The second most common form of the disease, peritoneal mesothelioma, results when the body attempted to expel the asbestos fibers or dust through coughing and then, when swallowed, they lodged in the abdominal cavity.
Other factors that raise your risk for mesothelioma
Other factors that could increase your risk of receiving this cancer diagnosis include the following:
- A virus possibly connected to the polio vaccine called the SV40 virus
- Radiation treatments for another form of cancer
- Other minerals with a similar chemical structure to asbestos such as zeolites
- Smoking during the same timeframe of asbestos exposure
In addition, if you are a man age 65 or older, your risk remains higher.
If you receive a diagnosis of mesothelioma
The odds are high that if your doctor diagnosed you with mesothelioma, you suffered from significant asbestos exposure in the workplace. Diagnosing this rare form of cancer isn't always easy since the same symptoms could indicate any number of illnesses. This is why it's important to let your doctor know that you worked around asbestos.
Since it may take upwards of half a century for the symptoms of this rare form of cancer to appear, you may think you have no avenue for pursuing compensation for your condition. However, you may be wrong. It could be in your best interests to find out what your legal rights and options are before dismissing the possibility.