Unfortunately the word Mesothelioma is becoming more and more known, the mere mention of this striking fear in all of us because we know that it is associated with death. Asbestos is the reaper, Mesothelioma is his daughter in the hand. Asbestos, the miracle product of the fifties is now recognized as an enemy of the twentieth century. A ruthless enemy who will kill more people than the war. Men, women and children will be victims of their prey, innocents who have at some point in their lives inhalation of asbestos dust. Most of us have been in contact with products containing asbestos in our life time. We sat in the asbestos classrooms, stood next to our fathers as they cut an asbestos fence, arrived old linoleum with asbestos clogged at the back of it. Visited the local board where the broken leaves of this were offered to the wind.Records show that there is a greater number of people with asbestosis and mesothelioma who have directly worked in asbestos mines, shipyards and the companies that manufacture asbestos products, but there are a large number of people who have never worked in those industries.
Their contact with asbestos, because of the dust brought home on their husband’s clothes or from the asbestos residues placed around the houses of mines and perimeters of the city. But the tragedy does not end there, children playing innocently in their own backyard played among asbestos residues as children play elsewhere in the sand. They had no way of knowing that their sand was blue asbestos. A good bath at the end of the day, perhaps removed the dust from the skin, but the dust in the lungs and would have stayed dormant for many years before claiming his deadly warning legacy.Without, a healthy individual suddenly gets to short of breath, x rays reveal fluid in the lungs and the nightmare begins. Questions are asked and you answer, yes, I was exposed to asbestos dust but I was alone in the city for a few months and it was more than 40 years ago. How is it possible? This is the most embarrassing thing about mesothelioma. Why is there such a long period of time between inhalation of asbestos dust and the onset of the disease? What triggers a strong healthy body suddenly succumb to it? What can we do to prevent this from happening? Blood tests are now available to determine if mesothelioma is present in the body before a person is aware of the symptoms.
This is an amazing breakthrough and may be the first step towards healing the disease before it becomes terminal. Recently, mesothelioma was cured of a mouse and attempts to give it back the mouse were unsuccessful. That too is an exciting thing and holds a glimmer of hope for all of us. I witnessed first-hand the devastation of mesothelioma. My husband was a strong, manly man who rarely had a day off in his life. Suddenly, at the age of 52, he became short of breath and was later diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma. He had lived in the asbestos mining town of Wittenoom in Western Australia for a few months at the age of seven. Asbestos dust inhaled then it took 45 years to become deadly. I still find it hard to believe. Despite his prognosis of three to nine months, Brian survived for two years. He was 54 when he died
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