Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Mesothelioma Cancers- An Overview


Mesothelioma Cancers- An Overview

What are Mesothelioma Cancers?

Mesothelioma cancers are the cancers that spread in the mesothelium tissues. Mesothelium in general is the name of tissue that forms lining of different body organs such as heart, lungs, abdomen and reproductive organs. The lining around abdominal organs is known as peritoneal membrane. Lining around lungs is called pleural membrane while the lining around heart is called pericardium. These linings perform two functions. They protect the internal organs by producing a lubricating fluid and to allow the smooth movement of the internal organs.

Mesothelioma cancers are the cancers affecting these membranes. The names of the cancers depend on the tissue or linings they affect. Peritoneal mesothelioma, pleural mesothelioma and pericardial mesothelioma are the names of cancers of linings of abdomen, lungs and heart, respectively. Pleural mesothelioma is the most common of all mesothelioma cancers and is found in 70 % of the mesothelioma patients. Peritoneal mesothelioma constitutes 10% to 20% of the mesothelioma patients while third type pericardial mesothelioma, is rare.

Symptoms of Mesothelioma Cancers

Symptoms of mesothelioma cancers are same as of other common diseases. It makes diagnosis mesothelioma cancers a difficult task. Pain and swelling in abdomen, weakness, loss of weight, loss of appetite and nausea are some symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma. Symptoms of pleural mesothelioma are persistent cough, difficulty in breathing, weight loss, loss of appetite, weakness, chest pains, lower back pains and difficulty in swallowing.

History

History of mesothelioma cancers goes back to as far back as 1900s. It took about 60 years to gather sufficient information about these mesothelioma cancers. By the end of sixth decade of last century, experts could conclude that exposure to asbestos particles is the reason behind the disease. J. C. Wagner was first researcher to report 32 cases of mesothelioma cancers and confirmed its association with asbestos exposure.

Compensation To Victims Of Asbestos Disease Mesothelioma

The first case of asbestos disease mesothelioma was filed nearly 70 years ago. Employees in industries with considerable risk of asbestos poisoning are, in principle, eligible for mesothelioma compensation. The compensation is available only for those employees who run the risk of asbestos exposure since the 1940s. Recently, many mesothelioma patients have filed lawsuits for compensation. They have been awarded compensation on the ground that the owners of industries continued to use asbestos despite the information of the health hazards it entails. Currently, help is available to victims of asbestos disease mesothelioma through many specialized legal firms in the United States.

By: Peter Kingston

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