In last week’s blog article, we discussed the basics of mesothelioma, including its definition and some historical background. This week, we continue our 3-part blog series with our second installment, covering the common signs and symptoms of malignant mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma is difficult to diagnose. The early signs and symptoms of the cancer can be very subtle or even mistaken for those of another condition, making it difficult to catch mesothelioma early-on. In addition, a person will not exhibit symptoms for 15 to 50 years after asbestos exposure, when the cancer has already developed, making it very difficult to make any connection between symptoms and disease.
Depending on the type of mesothelioma, pleural, peritoneal, pericardial or testicular, a person may experience different symptoms.
Because pleural mesothelioma affects the lungs, symptoms of this type usually affect the respiratory system and include chest pains, dyspnea or shortness of breath, decreased chest expansion, harsh or barely audible breathing sounds, wheezing or dry cough, and pleural effusions. Pleural thickening or lesions, called pleural plaques, are also indicative of mesothelioma.
The common symptoms of this abdominal form of mesothelioma include abdominal pain, abdominal enlargement, loss of appetite, weight loss, abdominal distention, and tenderness. As the cancer progresses, other complications may arise, including ascites, or fluid buildup between the abdominal organs and the peritoneum and even bowel obstruction.
Being a very rare form of mesothelioma, there are not many recorded cases of its symptoms. However, in the few case reports available, symptoms included chest pain, and difficulty breathing, caused by pericardium thickening.
Even more rare than pericardial mesothelioma, testicular mesothelioma has very few recorded cases; however, those that were recorded show only one consistent symptom: a lump in the testes.
Legal Strength during Your Time of Need
If you or someone you love has a history of asbestos exposure and has started exhibiting these symptoms within 15 to 50 years after said exposure, our knowledgeable Atlanta, Georgia mesothelioma lawyers at The Law Offices of Wayne Grant, P.C., can help point you in the right direction so that you can get the medical care you need and the legal relief you deserve.
Check back next week for the final installment of our mesothelioma blog series where we will be discussing the diagnosis and treatment of malignant mesothelioma.