What are the symptoms of mesothelioma?

What are the symptoms of mesothelioma?

MORE than 2,500 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma in the UK each year.

An inquest at Scunthorpe Civic Centre heard that teacher Elizabeth Belt died as a result of mesothelioma.

The mesotheliuma has different names in different parts of the body and the two main types of mesothelioma are pleural and peritoneal mesothelioma.

In the chest it’s called the pleura and in the abdomen it’s called the peritoneum.

A cancer of the mesothelium is called a malignant mesothelioma. However, it’s usually referred to simply as mesothelioma.

Asbestos is a natural mineral found in many countries.

It acts as an insulator (to keep heat in and cold out) and it protects against fire and corrosion.

There are three main types of asbestos: blue (crocidolite), brown (amosite) and white (chrysotile).

These were used in UK industries until the ban on imports of blue and brown asbestos in the 1980s and on all types in 1999.

Exposure to blue and brown asbestos is commonly linked with mesothelioma. However, exposure to all types of asbestos is harmful.

Mesothelioma doesn’t usually develop until many years after exposure to asbestos.

It can take any time from 10 to 60 years, although the average is about 30 to 40 years after exposure.

Figures released by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reveal 122 males and 18 females died from mesothelioma in North Lincolnshire between 1981 and 2011.

Elizabeth Belt: An inquest at Scunthorpe Civic Centre heard she died as a result of mesothelioma

Symptoms of pleural mesothelioma include:

• shortness of breath

• heavy sweating (especially at night)fever

• chest pain that feels heavy and dull or aching

• weight loss

• loss of appetite

• a cough that doesn’t go away, although this is unusual.

• A collection of fluid between the layers of the pleura (pleural effusion) may cause shortness of breath and chest pain.

Symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma include:

• swelling in the tummy (abdomen)

• tummy pain

• loss of appetite

• weight loss

• feeling sick

• changes to your normal bowel pattern, such as constipation or diarrhoea.

• A collection of fluid in the abdomen (ascites), may cause swelling in the tummy, pain, sickness and loss of appetite.

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