Asbestos Exposure Diseases
Besides being the main cause of mesothelioma, asbestos exposure is known to cause several other diseases. Despite the fact that mesothelioma remains latent for at least a decade, other asbestos related diseases appear much earlier after the initial exposure to the asbestos mineral.
Asbestos exposure is most of the times an occupational hazard, and some times it can take place at home, if the building is insulated using asbestos materials. Roofing of some houses may also be constructed using asbestos materials.
What are asbestos diseases?
Asbestos diseases are mostly related to breathing and lung disorders because the tiny fibers attack the tissue surrounding the chest cavity. Many asbestos workers are known to have breathing disorders; between those, a few develop lung diseases or even lung cancer.
Asbestos dust causes the most issues because it becomes airborne with ease and thus inhaled or swallowed by anyone in the vicinity. The risk increases for smokers or those that have already developed lung diseases from other causes.
Diseases caused by asbestos
More and more diseases are discovered that are related to some form of asbestos exposure. Here is a list of some of the most common disorders caused by exposure to the asbestos mineral:
- Lung and other cancers (most of the forms of cancer linked to asbestos are lung related, but there is no scientific proof that all of them are caused by the mineral)
- Asbestosis (a form of disease related to damage to the inside of the lung due to inhalation of asbestos dust)
- Pleural thickening (the pleura hardens and does not allow for normal activity of the lungs)
- Pleural plaques (localized form of pleural thickening, not as severe, but may cause further disorders if treated incorrectly)
- Autoimmune kidney disease (traces of asbestos found in the kidney led doctors to believe that this kind of disease is also related to asbestos exposure)
NIOSH (National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health) says that asbestos exposure diseases besides mesothelioma have been decreasing the past 2 years due to the fact that companies are more concerned about their workers health. On the other hand, attorneys say that the risk is not completely gone for asbestos workers, as their number of cases has remained stable across a longer period of time.
If you think you need more information regarding asbestos diseases or if you are a victim of one contact asbestos cancer organization and we will gladly help, cost free.