Symptoms and Types - Health Issue: Mesothelioma

Health Issue: Mesothelioma

Symptoms and Types

How Common is Mesothelioma?

Compared to many cancers, mesothelioma is still quite rare. Only 2,500-3,000 cases are diagnosed in the United States each year. There was a sharp increase in reported mesothelioma diagnoses between 1970 and 1984 which was linked to increased industrial exposure 40-60 years prior to this time, particularly prevalent in the WWII-era military industrial cycle, including navy shipyards.

While exposure was common across the United States in nearly all industries, it is much more common in men over the age of 60. Although less common, mesothelioma in women and children has been documented as well. Mesothelioma causes for diagnosis in women and children are mainly attributed to secondary exposure to asbestos by men who worked in asbestos-related jobs to bring back into the home on their bodies or clothing.

Mesothelioma is diagnosed through a comprehensive combination of biopsy and imaging scans.

Pleural Mesothelioma

Signs and symptoms of Pleural mesothelioma, which affects the tissue that surrounds the lungs, may include:

  • Unusual lumps of tissue under the skin on your chest
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Chest pain under the rib cage
  • Painful coughing
  • Shortness of breath

Peritoneal Mesothelioma

Signs and symptoms of Peritoneal mesothelioma, which occurs in tissue in the abdomen, may include:

  • Lumps of tissue in the abdomen
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Abdominal pain
  • Abdominal swelling

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