Tag Archives: asbestos exposure

Italian Case Illustrates Unusual Way of Tracking Asbestos Exposure

tracking asbestos exposure

After a mysterious cluster of mesothelioma cases cropped up among Italian textile workers, researchers found an unusual way of tracking asbestos exposure. Asbestos is the main cause of malignant mesothelioma. Many mesothelioma patients came in contact with asbestos at work. But it is not always clear how it happened.   Mesothelioma legal cases often hinge on tracking asbestos exposure at a negligent company. But in the case of the Italian textile workers, the exposure was not obvious. The workers produced sewing threads. They did not work directly with asbestos. It was not until an abatement company started removing asbestos from the plant, that researchers got a clearer picture of why the workers got sick.  The Challenge of Tracking Asbestos Exposure Asbestos … Continue reading Italian Case Illustrates Unusual Way of Tracking Asbestos Exposure »

Risk for Peritoneal Mesothelioma Keeps Rising Decades After Exposure

risk for peritoneal mesothelioma

Pleural mesothelioma risk may level off over several decades, but the risk for peritoneal mesothelioma never goes down. That is the conclusion of researchers at Italy’s University of Eastern Piedmont. It is based on data from more than 50,000 asbestos-exposed Italian workers.   More than 40 years after asbestos exposure, the workers’ risk for peritoneal mesothelioma continued to rise. Calculating Mesothelioma Rates Over Time Asbestos is the primary cause of all types of malignant mesothelioma. Even short-term asbestos exposure raises the risk for peritoneal mesothelioma and pleural mesothelioma. Peritoneal mesothelioma occurs in the lining of the abdomen. Pleural mesothelioma tumors start on the lining around the lungs.  If asbestos fibers are inhaled or swallowed, they embed themselves in these linings. This … Continue reading Risk for Peritoneal Mesothelioma Keeps Rising Decades After Exposure »

Flaxseed Compound May Help Prevent Malignant Mesothelioma and Asbestosis

prevent malignant mesothelioma with flaxseed compound?

There is new evidence that a compound found in flaxseeds may help prevent malignant mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases. The compound is an anti-inflammatory which appears to calm down the overactive immune system after asbestos exposure in mice. Inflammation has long been considered a key factor in the development of mesothelioma. Scientists are hopeful that preventing it may also prevent malignant mesothelioma. Inflammatory Response to Asbestos Exposure Asbestos is a group of naturally-occuring minerals that cause cancer in people and animals. When a person accidentally breathes in or swallows asbestos fibers, they trigger an inflammatory response that can last for years. White blood cells flock to the area and damaging free radicals are produced. Over time, some cells may become … Continue reading Flaxseed Compound May Help Prevent Malignant Mesothelioma and Asbestosis »

The Link Between Pleural Plaques and Mesothelioma

Fibrous thickening of the lung lining known as pleural plaques are a good indicator of asbestos exposure but they don’t necessarily mean that a person will development mesothelioma. That is the finding of a risk analysis released by a Princeton, New Jersey-based consulting firm. The firm studied the medical literature on pleural plaques to better understand the relationship between this common asbestos exposure side effect and the development of mesothelioma, the most deadly disease associated with asbestos. Pleural plaques typically develop two or three decades after asbestos exposure. They can grow on either the outer (parietal) pleura or the inner (visceral) pleura. While they can make breathing uncomfortable as they calcify over time, pleural plaques are not cancerous and have … Continue reading The Link Between Pleural Plaques and Mesothelioma »

How Much Asbestos Can Cause Mesothelioma?

Avoid exposure to asbestos – especially if you are a smoker. That is the central message in an article by two Dutch cancer researchers who have some good news and some bad news about the link between asbestos exposure and malignant pleural mesothelioma. Pulmonologists Dr. Paul Baas and Dr. JA Burgers of AVL/NKI Cancer Center in Amsterdam analyzed a study of 58,279 Dutch construction workers from 1986 to 2007. The study, published by Offermans et al in the January 2014 issue of the Journal of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, confirmed what past research has found – that the risk of lung cancer, laryngeal cancer, and mesothelioma increased as asbestos exposure increased. “The risk of development of … Continue reading How Much Asbestos Can Cause Mesothelioma? »

Can Mesothelioma Be Genetic?

A new study out of Italy suggests that a person is more likely to be diagnosed with mesothelioma if a sibling has the disease. That is especially true if both siblings were also exposed to asbestos. Scientists from Sapienza University and the Lazio Regional Health Service in Rome, as well as industrial disease experts from Viterbo, Italy searched a database including 10 percent of the Italian population to find familial clusters of mesothelioma cases. Among the 997 cases of mesothelioma recorded between 1980 and 2012, the team found 34 familial cases and 13 clusters. Together, these clusters accounted for 3.4% of all mesotheliomas in the database. “The most common clusters were those with affected siblings and unaffected parents,” reports Associate … Continue reading Can Mesothelioma Be Genetic? »

Mesothelioma Still Rising Despite Ban in Ireland

A study in Ireland confirms that it can take many years for a ban on asbestos to have a measurable impact on a country’s rates of malignant mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is the most serious of a list of diseases – including lung cancer, pleural plaques, asbestosis, and others – linked with exposure to asbestos dust. Affecting the linings around the lungs and other organs, mesothelioma is often resistant to most cancer treatments and may be fatal within a year of diagnosis. According to the International Ban Asbestos Secretariat, Ireland is one of 55 countries that have enacted some type of asbestos ban. However, although Ireland banned asbestos in 2000, a new study published in Cancer Epidemiology shows that incidence of the … Continue reading Mesothelioma Still Rising Despite Ban in Ireland »

Mesothelioma Victims’ Victory in Pennsylvania

asbestos

Workers and their families have won a victory in Pennsylvania after the state Supreme Court ruled that they could sue former employers over late-manifesting industrial diseases like mesothelioma. The decision focused on a provision in Pennsylvania’s Workers’ Compensation Act that says workers cannot sue an employer if their occupational disease occurred more than 300 weeks after their on-the-job exposure. While many occupational injuries and diseases occur within weeks or months of exposure to a toxin, asbestos diseases like mesothelioma are a notable exception. Believed to be caused by chronic irritation from inhaled or ingested asbestos fibers, mesothelioma does not usually begin to cause symptoms until at least a decade after exposure. Expressing the opinion of the majority, Supreme Court Justice … Continue reading Mesothelioma Victims’ Victory in Pennsylvania »

Mesothelioma Still Carries Heavy Mortality Burden in U.S.

Asbestos exposure cost Americans more than 427,000 years of potential life in the first decade of the new millennium. That figure comes from a study on mesothelioma and asbestosis – the two most deadly asbestos-related diseases – conducted by the CDC’s National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Using National Center for Health Statistics mortality data, NIOSH researchers evaluated premature deaths and “loss of potentially productive years of life” attributable to either asbestosis or mesothelioma between 1999 and 2010. The data included only people 25 years or older with an underlying cause of death listed on their death certificate of either asbestosis or malignant mesothelioma. When the figures were calculated using the normal life expectancy for each asbestosis victim … Continue reading Mesothelioma Still Carries Heavy Mortality Burden in U.S. »

Mesothelioma Case Shows Danger of Accidental Asbestos Exposure

waste engineer

A mesothelioma case in Birmingham, England is a dramatic illustration of the very real danger of hidden asbestos. The widow of a physician who died of mesothelioma last year at the age of 51 claims her husband was exposed to asbestos just walking to and from his medical classes. Monisha Coelho believes that exposed asbestos insulation in the underground hallways that connect the University of Birmingham to buildings on the Queen Elizabeth Hospital campus triggered Dr. Ian Pardoe’s mesothelioma. In an article in the Birmingham Mail, Coelho explained how her husband decided how and where the deadly exposure had occurred. “Ian thought long and hard about where he might have come into contact with asbestos,” Coelho told the paper. “He … Continue reading Mesothelioma Case Shows Danger of Accidental Asbestos Exposure »