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There is a growing base of research that suggests some women diagnosed with ovarian cancer may be suffering from misdiagnosed peritoneal mesothelioma.
Our mesothelioma cancer attorneys note a recent study by scientists at the University of Western Australia made the determination while studying links between asbestos and ovarian cancer. Exposure to asbestos may cause any number of health issues, and has been almost exclusively linked to causing mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma is a cancer that develops in the lining of internal organs. Because diagnosis often occurs 30 or 40 years after exposure, patients often have difficulty linking their health crisis with exposure to asbestos in the workplace or elsewhere, for which they deserve compensation. Mean survival after diagnosis is only about one year, making it critical to seek out experienced legal advice as early as possible after being diagnosed with this terrible disease.
As we reported previously on our Mesothelioma Blog, peritoneal mesothelioma is diagnosed in about 20 percent of cases. In this form, the cancer develops in the lining of the abdominal cavity, known as the peritoneal membrane. Pleural mesothelioma is more common — accounting for about 75 percent of all new cases. Pleural mesothelioma develops in the lining around the lungs, called the pleural.
Other forms are pericardial mesothelioma, which develops in the lining of the heart, and testicular mesothelioma.
In the recent study, researchers at the Western Australia Institute for Medical Research examined 16 cases of diagnosed ovarian cancer. In two cases, they found peritoneal mesothelioma. That is an error rate of about 16 percent, though the sample was admittedly very small.
Researchers continue to look for a link between mesothelioma and ovarian cancer. And, while they believe a link may exist, they note misdiagnoses make a determination more difficult. They did find that woman in the study who had ovarian cancer were more likely to have been exposed to asbestos than those in the general population.
Besides mesothelioma, exposure to asbestos has been linked to a number of other types of cancer, including gastrointestinal, kidney, throat and gallbladder.
The National Institutes of Health reports peritoneal mesothelioma continues to be regarded as universally fatal. While the number of cases has increased over the last two decades, peritoneal mesothelioma continues to account for only about 20 to 33 percent of cases.
Median survival is 6 to 12 months — with symptom to survival time being 345 days. About 400 new cases are reported annually. Those ages 50 to 69 are most affected. The main risk factor is exposure to asbestos.
A diagnosis that was exceedingly rare until 1930, industrial use of asbestos has been primarily to blame for modern cases.
The Ferraro Law Firm provides comprehensive legal services, including mesothelioma legal help.
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Frequently Asked Questions: Mesothelioma & Asbestos
What is asbestos?
Asbestos is a carcinogenic, naturally occurring fibrous mineral. Known for its heat resistance and durability, asbestos has historically been used in insulation, construction materials, automotive parts, and shipbuilding materials.
Why is asbestos dangerous?
Asbestos is made up of small shard-like fibers that can easily become airborne when disturbed. If inhaled or ingested, these fibers can embed within the lining of the lungs, heart, stomach, or testes where they can cause cancer to form years or decades later.
What are asbestos-related diseases?
Asbestos exposure can cause mesothelioma, asbestosis, and lung cancer.
What causes mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is an aggressive and incurable form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. Unfortunately, symptoms of mesothelioma may not appear until decades after exposure.
What are the different types of mesothelioma?
Three of the most common types of mesothelioma are pleural mesothelioma, peritoneal mesothelioma, and pericardial mesothelioma.
What are common mesothelioma symptoms?
Common symptoms of mesothelioma include difficulty breathing and chest pains. Peritoneal mesothelioma, which affects the stomach, may cause abdominal swelling, loss of appetite, constipation, abdominal pain, and nausea.
Do I qualify for compensation if I have mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is a preventable form of cancer most commonly caused by asbestos exposure. If you were exposed to asbestos while serving in the U.S. military or while working in construction, mechanics, or a similar field, you may be eligible for compensation. Contact The Ferraro Law Firm for a free legal consultation.
What is the life expectancy for someone with mesothelioma?
There is no cure for mesothelioma. However, patients can receive treatments for mesothelioma that may extend their initial prognosis with proper treatment. Those diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma usually have a life expectancy that is greater than three years, though a large part of this depends on the stage the patient is diagnosed. The earlier the diagnosis, the longer the life expectancy and chance of long-term survival.
Do I qualify for compensation if I have mesothelioma?
If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, you should immediately seek long-term medical treatment. After that, you should contact our firm to examine your legal rights. Since 1985, The Ferraro Law Firm has represented individuals with asbestos-related diseases and pursued fair compensation on their behalf. Our firm is one of the top five law firms in the U.S. handling mesothelioma and asbestos cases.