Families of Workers Who have been Exposed to Asbestos are also in Danger of Developing Mesothelioma

Thirty years after she came in contact with asbestos, this now 36-year old woman from St. Paul, Minnesota is found to be with mesothelioma, a deadly cancer with no known cure.

Mesothelioma is caused by exposure to asbestos, a mineral that was very widely used during late 19th and early 20th centuries. Workers who were regularly exposed to asbestos then included asbestos miners, and those who worked in manufacturing plants, power plants, construction sites, chemical plants, mills, railroads and shipyards, where thousands of enlisted personnel, especially from the US Navy were assigned.

Asbestos’ elasticity and resistance from heat rendered it a perfect fire retardant component in the production of thousands of different commercial and household products. Although perfectly useful, this mineral was discovered to release sharp fiber dusts which mixes easily with air, water and the food we eat. Once inside the body, these dusts accumulate in the lungs, scarring and damaging these over a period of time.

The surprising thing about the 36-year old woman diagnosed with mesothelioma was how she came in contact with asbestos. What she could remember was, when still aged six, she would always hug her father, a demolition worker, as soon as he arrived from work. Afterwards, she would put on and play with his dust and dirt-covered coat and shoes.

Mesothelioma is a rare form of malignant cancer that develops in the mesothelium, a lining that protects the internal organs, like the lungs, the heart, and the abdomen. One of the worst things about this malignant cancer that causes extreme pain is that it takes about 20 to 40 years to develop.

The owners and managers of the firms where mesothelioma victims previously worked knew about the dangers which exposure to asbesto would result to. Despite this, they chose to expose their workers to the deadly effects of asbestos for profit. Though many of these firms have already ceased operations, the government made sure that these were able to set up a Mesothelioma Compensation Trust Funds for the purpose of compensating workers whose lives and whose quality of living have been ruined.

According to the Williams Kherkher law firm, many more Americans may be at risk of developing mesothelioma due to the wide use of asbestos for a very long time. Though the effects of this cancer is irreversible, diagnosing the illness early on may help prolong the life span of the affected victim. Individuals who know or who think they have been exposed to asbestos (even during the early years of their lives) should never have second thoughts about approaching a doctor to have their medical condition checked.

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