How to know if you have mesothelioma

by | Dec 31, 2018 | Firm News

Over the years, many Americans have developed mesothelioma due to exposure to asbestos. Some reports estimate that approximately 3,000 people receive a mesothelioma diagnosis annually

It is vital to know whether you can file a lawsuit for a disease a doctor could have prevented. Everyone in Louisiana needs to be aware of mesothelioma symptoms, so they know if they can pursue further legal action. 

How it begins

In the beginning, mesothelioma takes the form of tiny nodules forming along the lining of the abdomen or lungs. It is difficult to find symptoms at this stage, which is why mesothelioma is such a dangerous illness. The most common symptoms you find at this stage include:

  • Pain in the abdomen and chest
  • Trouble breathing
  • Constant shortness of breath
  • Dry wheezing or coughing

For many people, these symptoms are no cause for concern. They may not even realize a problem is present. That is why it is so critical to schedule regular doctor’s appointments throughout the year. A simple blood test or routine X-ray can reveal the presence of the nodules. If you believe you came into contact with asbestos recently, then you need to see a doctor right away to make sure everything is all right. 

How it develops

Unfortunately, many people do not get the treatment they need until mesothelioma has significantly advanced. Later stages bring about far more intense symptoms, and you should definitely see a doctor if you experience any of the following. 

  • Bowel obstruction
  • Problems swallowing
  • Severe respiratory complications
  • Complete loss of appetite
  • Extreme weight loss
  • Anemia
  • Increased pain around the abdomen and chest

Not all people with mesothelioma experience all these symptoms. Only about 36 percent of patients who have mesothelioma develop a chronic cough. You simply need to be aware of any changes to your health, even if it only seems to be minor.