Risk factors increase the chances someone could contract an illness — every disease has them. Sometimes, you can alter risk factors. For example, a smoker may quit smoking to lower their risk of getting a certain form of cancer. Other times, risk factors are out of your control, such as your age and family history. Having risk factors for mesothelioma doesn’t automatically mean you will get the disease, but it does mean you are more susceptible to it. A common question people have is: What are the most common mesothelioma risk factors?
Exposure to Asbestos
The majority of mesothelioma cases have been linked to high levels of asbestos exposure. Asbestos is a group of naturally occurring minerals found in rocks and soil. When its fibers are inhaled or swallowed, they can become lodged in the linings of the lungs, heart, or abdomen. Over time, the fibers cause inflammation in the mesothelium and eventually form tumors. Your risk for developing mesothelioma depends on how often and for how long you have been exposed to asbestos.
You may be at an increased risk for mesothelioma if you …
- Worked in an asbestos plant or with asbestos products
- Worked in a high-risk industry such as construction
- Served on military ships or in facilities built with asbestos products
- Lived near an asbestos-contaminated site
- Renovated your home (which can dislodge asbestos products)
Other Mesothelioma Risk Factors
Other risk factors for mesothelioma include:
- Age: The odds of getting mesothelioma increase with age. While the disease can occur in younger people, it is rare under the age of 45. The average age of mesothelioma patients is 69, and patients aged 80 to 84 have the highest incidence rate.
- Gender: Mesothelioma is more common in men than in women, in part because men tend to work in industries that more frequently involve asbestos exposure.
- Family History: If a sibling, parent, or child has mesothelioma, your chances of getting the disease are higher.
- Living With Someone Who Works With Asbestos: People who are exposed to asbestos at work can bring asbestos fibers home with them and put other people at risk.
- Radiation: There have been reports of mesothelioma developing after exposure to high doses of radiation for other cancers.
Contact a Mesothelioma Attorney
If you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, contact Morgan & Morgan today — you may be eligible for significant compensation. We’ve recovered billions of dollars on behalf of more than 100,000 clients in situations just like yours. We understand that the price for pain is infinite — what you’re losing is priceless. Morgan & Morgan is ready to be by your side and fight for the justice and compensation you deserve so you can focus on what’s most important. Complete our risk-free case evaluation form now to find out more.