Exposure to the once widely used building material, asbestos, has now been linked to causing the cancer Mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a fatal cancer that is most commonly seen in industrial workers who inhaled asbestos fibers. Although Mesothelioma is a deadly and dangerous cancer, the symptoms can be hard to spot and are often confused with less serious illnesses.
Common symptoms of Mesothelioma are dry cough and wheezing, chest pain, fever, and weight loss. However, the symptoms can vary based on the kind of Mesothelioma. The most common type is Pleural Mesothelioma and affects is the lining of the lungs and chest wall. The inhaling of asbestos fibers can cause fluid buildup along the lungs. This type is associated with the symptoms of coughing, reduced chest expansion, shortness of breath, and pleural effusions, which is the buildup of fluid between the tissues that line the chests and lungs. These symptoms can all occur at once, but usually occur in small stages, leading to individuals not raising alarm at them.
Another kind of Mesothelioma is Peritoneal mesothelioma which affects the lining of the abdomen. Individuals suffering from this experience abdominal swelling, loss of appetite, weight loss, hernias, and fatigue. Although less common than pleural mesothelioma, this kind can be just as fatal.
According to the website of Williams Kherkher, pericardial mesothelioma is one of the rarest forms of mesothelioma and affecting the lining of the heart, thickening it. Symptoms include difficulty breathing and chest pains.
Testicular mesothelioma is the rarest form and can be the hardest to detect, as the only common symptom found is a lump in the testes. There is no other recognized symptoms of this type of mesothelioma.
Although there are symptoms of mesothelioma, they are often misdiagnosed by doctors not used to dealing with mesothelioma. It can be misdiagnosed as bronchitis and pneumonia, leaving symptoms to become worse. Some symptoms may even take years to become serious enough for individuals to suspect something serious. This is one of the reasons the disease can be so fatal to those exposed to asbestos over prolonged periods of time.