What is mesothelioma? How is asbestos related to this disease? These are just some of the many questions that those who have been exposed to asbestos or diagnosed with mesothelioma often seek answers to.
In this section you will find information about mesothelioma, the major risk factors associated with the disease, symptoms to watch out for and the jobs and work environments that have historically posed the greatest threat of asbestos exposure to the American workforce.
Mesothelioma is a type of asbestos cancer that affects the mesothelium, a thin lining that protects the major organs of the lungs, heart and abdomen. Learn more about the different types of mesothelioma in this section including pleural mesothelioma, peritoneal mesothelioma and pericardial mesothelioma.
Asbestos exposure is the primary risk factor for mesothelioma. Prior to 1980 asbestos was used in a large number of products across many industries because it possessed excellent fire and heat resistant properties. Learn more about asbestos exposure and other risk factors for mesothelioma in this section.
The symptoms most commonly associated with mesothelioma often mimic those of other less threatening upper respiratory illnesses. If you believe that you were exposed to asbestos either directly on the job or indirectly from the clothing of a loved one who worked with asbestos you should watch out for these symptoms.
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that is known for its superb heat and fire resistance capability. It was widely used in numerous products and applications that required this capability until the late 1970’s. Learn more about this popular insulating material, where it was used and the health hazards associated with it.
Large numbers of America’s workers and military veterans were unknowingly exposed to high levels of asbestos while on the job or serving their country. Occupations ranging from auto mechanics to welders put workers at risk for hazardous exposure to asbestos. Navy veterans who worked as boiler men, engine mechanics, firemen, gunners or ship fitters were particularly susceptible to being exposed to asbestos while “on the job.” Learn more about the wide range of occupations that posed a significant health threat to those who worked in them.
Asbestos was not widely used in the manufacture of products until the 1940’s. It is currently estimated, however, that around 3,000 products were made with this dangerous insulating material prior to 1980. The types of asbestos containing products range from home and commercial building materials like floor and ceiling tiles to automotive products such as brake pads and linings and industrial products including sealants, cement, insulation and more.
Shipyards, power plants, schools and steel mills represent just a small cross section of jobsites where the risk of asbestos exposure was extremely high. In this section we provide a comprehensive list of jobsites across a variety of industries where workers were placed at risk for being exposed to asbestos and developing mesothelioma.