Malignant mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that starts in the mesothelium, a membrane that covers and protects most internal organs of the body. The mesothelium is composed of two layers, one surrounding the body itself, and the other forms a sac around it completely. A small amount of fluid is normally produced between these two layers, lubricating the motion of the organs protected. When normal cells of the mesothelium lose control and spread quickly, they produce mesothelioma. The form of mesothelioma is the most common mesothelioma "pleural". It occurs in the pleura, the lining of the lungs. Other forms are mesothelioma "peritoneal" reaching the peritoneum lining the abdominal cavity and mesothelioma "pericardial", pericardium, the lining of the heart.
What causes mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is almost always caused by exposure to asbestos fibers. Many people have been exposed to the army, others by their occupation, and others, secondarily, through contact with exposed workers. Because of latent cancer, it may not appear until 20-50 years or more after exposure.
Is mesothelioma is common?
Based on information obtained from the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health in Helsinki, the incidence of mesothelioma in Western Europe is expected to reach its peak between 2010 and 2020.
Who is at risk of developing mesothelioma?
Those who have worked directly with asbestos or asbestos products are most at risk of developing mesothelioma, however, mesothelioma has been reported in some individuals who have had minimal exposure.
Among the shops at high risk of developing mesothelioma include:
* The carpenter iron (including shipbuilding)
* The manufacturers of the vehicle chassis (including rail vehicles)
* Gas Installers
* Workers building
* Steel Manufacturers
* Sheet Metal
What types of products typically contain asbestos?
The following products have widely varying rates contained asbestos. This list does not include them all and is a source of general information.
- Moulded or preformed shield used in thermal insulation of pipes and boilers
- The planned asbestos used as protection against fire in ducts, firewall, panels, partitions, soffit boards, ceiling panels and around structural steel construction
- Insulation panels used as protection against fire, thermal insulation, partitions and ducts
- Jam asbestos used as fire breaks in ceiling voids
- Cardboard wrapped, paper and paper products used for insulation of electrical equipment, asbestos paper may also be used as combustible on the side panels of wood fibers
- Products of asbestos cement flat and corrugated sheets used to cover walls or ceilings, the cement products have also been used in gutters, rainwater pipes and water tanks
- The textured surfaces (such as the Artex)
- Material of roofing asphalt
- Vinyl floor tile or thermoplastic