Study Shows Alarming Increase in Cases of Mesothelioma Among the Young
A mesothelioma incidence study was recently conducted by the U.S. Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, and one particular finding is drawing increased attention and alarm from health advocates. Though the study predictably indicated that most of the mesothelioma deaths in the United States in the years between 1999 and 2015 occurred in people over the age of 85, it also showed a marked increase in the disease being diagnosed in young people between the ages of 25 and 44. With mesothelioma generally taking between twenty and fifty years to manifest symptoms these findings are unusual, and an indication that the restrictions that have been put in place for exposure to asbestos have not been anywhere near as effective as had been hoped. The researchers behind the study believe that the only possible conclusion for how these younger victims were exposed was at some point during their childhood.
In the 1970s the Environmental Protection Agency made clear that mesothelioma and numerous other diseases were caused by exposure to asbestos. Though the material was not entirely banned, its used was dramatically reduced and regulations were put into place to protect people from inhaling or ingesting the material. But the report’s finding of so many people born after these changes being diagnosed means that the ban is not enough, and that more may need to be done. According to Dr. Hedy Kindler, professor of medicine at the University of Chicago and director of its mesothelioma program, “The problem with asbestos exposure is, there are really so many places where one can be exposed.” Though most people diagnosed with the disease were exposed to asbestos via their workplace, others can be exposed to the asbestos that they carried home on their clothing, or through asbestos insulation or materials that were used in the construction of homes, school buildings, hospitals and more.
“It can take anywhere from 20 to 50 years from exposure to the development of mesothelioma,” Kindler says. “You can be exposed at small levels for a long period or high levels for a brief period.”
Experts say that for those who know they have been exposed, awareness and early detection is the key to the longest possible survival in the face of this deadly disease. The Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net are here to help. We can provide you with valuable information about medical resources, as well as financial resources available to those who have already been diagnosed. For more information, contact us at www.mesothelioma.net or call us at 1-800-692-8608.