A. Definition of Asbestos Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral fiber widely used in building materials, insulation, and other products due to its heat-resistant properties. It was commonly used in the construction industry from the 1940s to the 1970s. Different types of asbestos fibers include chrysotile, amosite, crocidolite, tremolite, anthophyllite, and actinolite.
B. How Asbestos exposure occurs Asbestos fibers are microscopic and can quickly become airborne when disturbed or damaged. Therefore, individuals who work with asbestos-containing products or materials, such as construction workers, shipbuilders, and miners could develop mesothelioma. However, asbestos fibers can also be released into the air during the demolition or renovation of buildings containing asbestos, which can put the general public at risk of exposure. In addition, individuals who live with or care for those who work with asbestos can also be exposed to the fibers.
C. How Asbestos causes Mesothelioma and Asbestosis When asbestos fibers are inhaled, they can become lodged in the lining of the lungs, abdomen, or heart, where they can cause damage over time. As a result, asbestos exposure is known to cause two primary diseases: Mesothelioma and Asbestosis. Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that affects the lining of the lungs, abdomen, or heart. Conversely, asbestosis is a chronic lung disease caused by prolonged exposure to asbestos fibers.
D. Explanation of the dangers of Asbestos Asbestos exposure can have severe and often fatal consequences. Asbestos related cancers and diseases may take up to 40 years to develop, which can result in late detection. In addition to these diseases, asbestos exposure is also associated with other respiratory problems, such as lung cancer and pleural mesothelioma. It is important to note that there is no safe level of asbestos exposure; even brief exposure can lead to these mesa diseases. Therefore, taking proper precautions when working with or around asbestos-containing products and materials is crucial to avoid exposure. A second opinion for mesothelioma diagnosis is extremely valuable, as an accurate diagnosis provides the greatest chance of survival.