Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that is especially devastating due to its high mortality rate. A particularly distressing consequence of the industrial revolution, relatively little is known about the disease. Here are the top ten facts about mesothelioma.
10. Mesothelioma is caused by asbestos exposure
The significant most important factor in the development of mesothelioma is expensive to asbestos. The condition most often occurs in people working in the production of asbestos and people living near natural asbestos deposits.
9. Mesothelioma is difficult to diagnose
Mesothelioma can be difficult for doctors to diagnose because its symptoms are often similar to those caused by other health conditions.
8. Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer
Mesothelioma is actually quite rare, and the number of people affected is less than 1% of all those affected by other types of cancers in the United Kingdom. In the United States, 3,000 people are diagnosed with the condition every year, which is a relatively small number.
7. Mesothelioma has a high mortality rate
Unfortunately, mesothelioma is a very lethal condition, and most people who develop it tend to die soon after the disease is detected. Worse still, the rate of mortality from mesothelioma is increasing every year.
6. Mesothelioma deaths among women is increasing
One particularly disturbing trend is that the death rate among women with mesothelioma is increasing every year. From 389 reported deaths among women mesothelioma patients in the United Kingdom in 2010, the number increased to 432 the following year.
5. Mesothelioma tends to affect men more than women
Men are five times more likely to develop mesothelioma than women. Although the number of cases of mesothelioma in women is increasing every year, there is a corresponding increase in the number of cases of mesothelioma in men as well.
4. Mesothelioma symptoms may occur decades after exposure
One of the most alarming aspects of mesothelioma is that the symptoms of the condition only appear several years after initial exposure. In fact, most people who develop that disease were exposed to asbestos 20 to 50 years before it was detected.
3. Mesothelioma responds better to radiation and chemotherapy in conjunction with surgery
There are a number of treatment methods used for controlling the progression of mesothelioma, including surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. Unfortunately, the disease dose not respond especially well to surgery alone, and most patients respond more favorably when surgery is combined with radiation and chemotherapy.
2. Mesothelioma has a low recovery rate
In addition to having a high mortality rate, mesothelioma also has a low recovery rate. A small percentage of patients will recover from the disease after several years, but most will develop other health conditions due to the high risk of infection.
1. Mesothelioma is especially alarming in developing countries
As serious as mesothelioma is in the United States and developed countries, it is even more so in developing countries. Many developing countries simply do not have qualified medical care professionals and healthcare facilities to help people deal with the disease. In addition to resulting in an even higher rate of mortality, it also means that the quality of healthcare that mesothelioma patients receive is much less satisfactory than that which they should receive.