Mesothelioma is a deadly form of cancer. Most cases in Pennsylvania come from asbestos exposure. Though there are treatments, they can only improve your quality of life and give you more time. Since there isn’t a cure, mesothelioma is always deadly.
One of the most alarming features of this disease is its long latency period. A latency period is the time between when a disease starts to develop and when you first experience symptoms. The latency period of mesothelioma can be up to 50 years. That’s why, even if you don’t exhibit symptoms, you should consult your doctor if you have a history of asbestos exposure.
Mesothelioma affects the body’s mesothelium, which is a layer of tissue around the internal organs. Depending on which part of the mesothelium is affected, doctors divide mesothelioma into several categories. Each expresses different symptoms.
Peritoneal mesothelioma occurs in the abdominal area. Its symptoms include:
• Pain in the abdomen
• Swelling in the abdomen
• Weight loss
Pleural mesothelioma occurs around the lungs. Its symptoms include:
• Chest pain
• Shortness of breath
• Lumps in the chest area
• Weight loss
Pericardial mesothelioma and testicular mesothelioma are less common. The pericardial type may cause chest pain and shortness of breath. The testicular kind can cause swelling, lumps and pain in the testicles.
You may have noticed that mesothelioma’s symptoms overlap with those of many other illnesses. That means misdiagnosis is common. If you experience these symptoms, it’s vital that you mention prior asbestos exposure to your doctor.
A mesothelioma diagnosis can be devastating. If you’ve developed mesothelioma after asbestos exposure, you may benefit from contacting an attorney with experience in asbestos and mesothelioma cases.