Mesothelioma And The Hazards of Airborne Asbestos Particles

Mesothelioma is a particularly aggressive and dangerous form of cancer that manifests in the interior lung lining of the patient. It can spread at a disturbing rate, overtaking the heart, lungs or chest unless it is met with the appropriate chemotherapy treatment. Direct contact with Asbestos is the leading cause of mesothelioma, but the particles released by asbestos building materials can lead to other health issues, both in the short-term and long-term. By knowing what to expect from airborne asbestos particles, individuals may be better equipped to avoid them and contact the appropriate professionals to have them removed from the indoor environment as soon as possible.

Development of Asbestosis

Asbestosis may occur in those who spend too much time around asbestos fibers. This is a chronic lung condition that results in the growth of scar-like tissue in the lungs. This type of fibrosis can reduce the functional elasticity of lung tissue, which can make breathing much more difficult for the patient. Shortness of breath is one of the most common symptoms, and a physical sign to watch out for is an audible crackle, which is detectable through a stethoscope and occurs when the patient breathes. The reduced respiratory function can significantly reduce the patients quality of life long after they leave the asbestos-filled environment.

Increased Risks of Lung Cancer

Because of how the fibers interact with the individual’s lungs, sometimes the airways themselves will bear the brunt of the damage before the interior lung lining begins to suffer. Unnecessary exposure to asbestos can result in an increased risk of developing lung cancer, particularly in those who were already at risk. Individuals who smoke regularly or work in unsafe environments for extended periods of time may increase their chances of damaging their lung health when they work with asbestos. As such, it is crucial to wear the appropriate safety equipment before starting to work around the dangerous material.

Immune System Damage

Studies show that in addition to the danger that the material poses to an individual’s lings, it can also attack the immune system. Research performed on those who spent time around asbestos found that these individuals had reduced immune system function. Whether it is a result of the way asbestos attacks the lungs or a direct attack on the immune system by the fibers is unclear, and medical professionals continue to perform the appropriate research in the hopes of finding out more about the link. The reduced immune system function was noticeable, however, to the point of professional concern.

Individuals who think that their building may have asbestos present in the air should be sure to contact the appropriate remediation professionals at their earliest convenience. While some sections of asbestos are better left alone, those that are already damaged should be attended to as soon as possible in order to prevent them from degrading the indoor air quality any further. Planning ahead and avoiding as much contact with the asbestos as possible is the best way to avoid developing any number of related health issues.