Asbestos and Mesothelioma

In the U.S. alone, 2,500 to 4,000 patients are diagnosed with mesothelioma every year. Still not much information about mesothelioma, and there is a mistaken belief that it is a problem that will only be lost through use of asbestos has been largely reduced. There is a latency period of 15 to 50 years of exposure to asbestos to develop mesothelioma, so that cases of mesothelioma will continue to be diagnosed.

Asbestos is a natural mineral fiber widely used for fireproofing and insulation especially until the 1970's. Although most of the cleared, countless Americans continue to suffer serious health effects, and often deadly, from exposure to asbestos. When inhaled, asbestos can cause asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma.

Asbestos-containing materials / products to include pipe and furnace insulation materials, asbestos and cement shingles, siding and roofing, millboard, resilient floor tiles, background on sheet vinyl flooring and flooring adhesives, soundproofing or decorative material, patching and joint compounds, brake automotive bearings and linings, clutch facings and gaskets, as well as a number of other sources. Asbestos linked to mesothelioma, lung cancer and asbestosis. More than 300,000 asbestos-related claims now pending, according to the RAND Institute study, because of allegations that exposure to asbestos resulted in death and disease.

Some experts estimate the number of cases of mesothelioma in the U.S. will increase for several decades. Many work settings, as well as public buildings, schools, homes and offices continue to present the dangers of asbestos even today. In December 2000, according to the RAND Institute study, more than 600,000 asbestos-related lawsuits have been filed in the U.S. Over the past few years, Congress has attempted to resolve the situation with legislation to create an asbestos trust fund, but so far, the political side is not capable of to agree on terms.

Asbestos-containing materials / products was widespread before the experts realize a naturally occurring mineral fibers are carcinogenic. At the Environmental Protection Agency and Consumer Product Safety Commission banned several asbestos-containing materials / products, a large number of workers, communities and families have been exposed to hazardous fibers.

Most products today will not have a material containing asbestos, and if any asbestos-containing materials / products are made it should be clearly labeled. While most asbestos-containing materials / products are removed, if made prior to the 1970's they will contain asbestos. From the greatest risk of asbestos-containing materials / products are still occupying public buildings, homes, offices, schools, churches and other places many kinds of building products and insulation materials.

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