Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Facts And Statistics About Mesothelioma

Asbestos originated as a cause of cancer in the 1930s. Manufacturing industries used asbestos in their production processes which caused many of the workers to be exposed to copious amounts of asbestos. It is also known to cause lung cancer and what used to be known as "asbestosis." In spite of that, asbestos was continued to be used by the industries for decades.

Facts Regarding Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma has a long latency period, and is recognized as a severe and serious disease. The mesothelioma patients are often victims of inaccurate diagnoses. Many of the symptoms of mesothelioma are similar to that of other diseases like pneumonia, heart diseases, flu, bronchitis and others. This makes the detection of mesothelioma difficult.

Mesothelioma is most commonly found in people in the age group of 55-70 years. It is a rare disease affecting people below 50 years of age. And roughly, 75 percent of the patients are above 65 years.

Because of the long latency period mesothelioma is mostly diagnosed only in the later stages. The symptoms cannot be seen at the early stages. The average latency period is around 30 years. The average survival rate is around one year after the diagnosis. But the five year relative rate of survival is also seen to be improving from just ten percent cases it stood at just five years ago.

This means that there are some rare cases where the patient survives for as long as 5 years since the diagnosis.

Summary of Facts

  • The latency period is around 30-40 years.
  • Mesothelioma is a terminal disease.
  • It is mostly diagnosed in the later stages.
  • Exposure to asbestos is the main cause of this disease.
  • It is commonly misdiagnosed as flu.

People suffering from mesothelioma are mainly from the age group of 55-75 years.