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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Mesothelioma risk buried by Ottawa government, scientist alleges

Mesothelioma risk buried by Ottawa government, scientist alleges
Trevor Ogden is the British scientist who headed the Health Canada panel that studied the risk of mesothelioma and other cancers from Canadian chrysotile asbestos. Dr. Ogden says that the Ottawa government tried to suppress the panel’s report because it was a threat to the Canadian province’s asbestos industry. Canadian asbestos is exported to countries in the developing world, and the Ottawa government has spent almost $20 million in the last 25 years promoting its asbestos exports.

The expert panel was convened in late 2007, and the report was completed in March 2008. But it took more than a year for the report to become available—and even then, only through public information requests made by the media.

Health Canada has still not published the report on its website, as it generally does for scientific studies that are funded by the organization. It says that the delay has been necessary to fully review the report and discuss the findings with “other federal and provincial partners.”

The report confirms that chrysotile asbestos causes cancer—as has been generally accepted by health organizations around the globe. The report also discussed the frequently contamination of chrysotile asbestos with tremolite fibers, the same type of asbestos that contaminated the vermiculite ore in Libby, Montana and caused hundred of deaths there.

A British expert who oversaw a report on the dangers of the chrysotile variety of asbestos says he believes Ottawa tried to suppress his work to protect the Quebec industry that mines the cancer-causing mineral.

"I can only speculate, and my speculation is that there were interests in continuing Canadian production of chrysotile and they saw the report as a threat," Trevor Ogden, editor-in-chief of the Annals of Occupational Hygiene and a former top adviser to the British government on asbestos hazards, said in an interview.
Dr. Ogden headed an expert panel that Health Canada assembled in late 2007 to study the cancer risk of chrysotile. The report has been ready since March, 2008, but has been available only since last week after Access to Information Act requests from the media, including The Globe and Mail.

Health Canada isn't publishing the report on its website, the usual practice for scientific studies that it funds, but says anyone who asks for a copy will be given one.

Although the link between asbestos and cancer is accepted internationally, the saga of the report indicates just how sensitive the issue is within the federal government.

Canada and other developed countries use little asbestos, and many nations ban it because of the health and liability risk. Most of Quebec's production is exported to the developing world for use as an inexpensive additive to strengthen cement building products.

Ottawa has spent nearly $20-million since 1984 promoting the mineral abroad.

Health Canada said it delayed releasing the report because of the need to study it. "Health Canada took the time necessary to carefully review the findings of the report, and to consult with other federal and provincial partners," it said in a statement to The Globe.

The introduction to the report, written by Dr. Ogden, concludes that chrysotile shows "a strong relationship of exposure with lung cancer, but a much less certain relationship with mesothelioma," a cancer in the lining of the chest wall.

The report also concludes that chrysotile generally contains trace amounts of a more harmful variety of asbestos known as tremolite.

As well, the panel noted but couldn't explain why the results of two studies suggest that it is far more of a health hazard for people to work with asbestos than to mine it.

The studies showed that lung cancer risk in South Carolina textile workers who use asbestos was about 70 times greater than that of Quebec's miners, according to the report. Asbestos causes cancer when its fibres are inhaled.

In an interview, Leslie Stayner, an epidemiology professor at the University of Illinois who was on Health Canada's asbestos panel, said researchers do not know why the textile workers were at greater risk. He said one theory is that the longer asbestos fibres used to make textiles are more deadly.

Dr. Stayner says he would be reluctant to work with Health Canada again because he feels the government "violated" an understanding that the work would be published in a timely fashion on a government website.

Health Canada said in its statement that it "sought the advice of leading international scientists on the risks posed by chrysotile asbestos so that it could better understand the scientific debate. No other country has encouraged such a debate amongst scientists with widely varying opinions."

Health Canada isn't alone in having trouble handling the issue of asbestos.

Late last month, Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff responded to a questioner at a town hall in Victoria about Canada's asbestos exports by saying the sales "of this dangerous product overseas has got to stop."

The remarks were recorded by the Tyee, the British Columbia-based online magazine.

"I'm probably walking right off the cliff into some unexpected public policy bog of which I'm unaware, but if asbestos is bad for parliamentarians in the Parliament of Canada, it just has to be bad for everybody else," he said.

But when he was later asked about the remark by reporters, he dropped the call for an end to exports.

Reference links

What Is Mesothelioma? | Health In Life

Mesothelioma Patient Sees Tumor Disappear with Integrative Medicine - Asbes..

Mesothelioma Lawyer News: Mesothelioma Cancer - University Seeks Asbestos..

mesothelioma » Blog Archive » What is Asbestos Cancer Mesoth..

Mesothelioma - A Brief Look At Mesothelioma Cancer | Health Journal Online

Staging Mesothelioma: Steps after a Diagnosis -

citi credit » Blog Archive » Mesothelioma Law

You Are Protected Under The Mesothelioma Law | Cancer News Today

» Rare win for defense in mesothelioma case  

Mesothelioma Awareness: 2010 Designated as “The Year of the Lung” | Peo..

The Dilemma of Mesothelioma Victims – Tackling the Dreadful Asbestos ..

Mesothelioma News: Asbestos trial begins in Italy | Press Release

Peritoneal Mesothelioma Information

does cancer only occur in a heavily toxic body or can it occur in a health ..

Mesothelioma Treatment Options, San Diego Asbestos Attorneys | How Do Stock..

Asbestos & Mesothelioma: Association Calls for US to Ban Asbestos

Press Release: EIN News Launches New Mesothelioma, H1N1, Book Publishing..

Patients of Mesothelioma, Mesothelioma Survival and Help | Official Class A..

Mesothelioma News: Leader in palliative cancer care for mesothelioma patien..

Mesothelioma Specialists around US

Monday, March 23, 2009

Find out if you’ve been exposed to asbestos at work

Find out if you’ve been exposed to asbestos at work

The mesothelioma attorneys of Weitz & Luxenberg would like to share the experience of a man who inquired about his legal options after having spent many years working in jobs that exposed him to asbestos. At the time he contacted the mesothelioma lawyers of Weitz & Luxenberg, he only had 68% lung capacity left.

In the 1970s, he worked as an auto repairman. Asbestos is frequently used in automobile parts such as brakes. This is because asbestos does not burn and is therefore suitable for use in friction products such as brakes. Mechanics who work with car brakes employ two procedures that can expose them to airborne asbestos fibers: Air-blowing brake wear debris, which frequently contains dusty chrysotile asbestos; and grinding and beveling new asbestos brake linings or pads, which can release asbestos fibers into the air.

Asbestos fibers are often not visible to the human eye. Thus, a mechanic working with asbestos containing brakes is at risk for inhaling asbestos fibers without even being aware of it. Once inhaled, asbestos fibers remain within the body and can cause serious diseases like mesothelioma and lung cancer decades later.

Although asbestos is banned in new U.S. vehicles, globalization and outsourcing allow automobile components (formerly assembled inside the United States) to come from outside the United States, where asbestos regulations are lax or even non-existent. Thus, auto workers continue to be at high risk for asbestos exposure.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Sauna - The Top Choice

Infrared Sauna - The Top Choice

The infrared sauna is quickly becoming the product of choice when it comes to residential or commercial saunas. Unlike traditional units, which use steam to warm the air, infrared saunas use a special type of heat called far-infrared radiant heat, or FIR, a natural energy that penetrates the skin directly without raising the temperature of the surrounding air.

FIR harnesses the therapeutic warming effects of the sun without the harmful UV components, so it's a safe and effective way to reap the many benefits of sauna usage, which include increased circulation, pain relief, toxin removal and many others.

What makes far infrared saunas superior to traditional types is that they are much more effective, delivering deep heat penetration with much less energy expenditure. Therefore they are less costly to operate, and maximize efficiency.

Also, because they do not heat up the air surrounding the user, they operate at much lower temperatures, only 110-130 degrees Fahrenheit vs. 180-215 degrees for a traditional unit. This offers a much more comfortable environment for the bather, not to mention safer. Regular saunas are often steamy and hot, and it is often quite difficult to breathe. Many older people and those with health conditions tend not to use them for this reason. The infra red sauna, with its noticeably cooler, more breathable environment, can be enjoyed by anyone, young, old or infirm.

Other advantages of far infrared saunas include much quicker warming time, usually 10-20 minutes vs. up to an hour or more, increased sweat leading to more toxin removal, easier assembly and lower costs.

There will always be those individuals who prefer the traditional sauna experience, adapted from Finnish custom, throwing water on hot stones to give off steam. To them that is the only true way to bathe.

But for a growing number of people, infra red saunas are the way to go, offering a relaxing, therapeutic environment without the drawbacks of steam units. This new technology provides a way to reap the many health benefits without having to endure oppressive heat.

Whichever type you choose, you can enjoy it right in the privacy of your own home, because they make units in every size and shape for residential use. You can choose from pre-built models or build one from scratch with a sauna kit.

Do a little research and see what appeals to you. If you're a purist then a Finnish model might be your top choice. If not, you might find that far infrared saunas are just what you're looking for.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

New Mesothelioma Test Improves Diagnosis

New Mesothelioma Test Improves Diagnosis
Since introducing miRview™ meso in December 2008, Rosetta Genomics has already begun distributing the breakthrough test in Israel and Turkey.

miRview™ meso is a microRNA-based molecular diagnostic test that differentiates malignant pleural mesothelioma from other carcinomas in the lung. Malignant mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that is almost exclusively caused by asbestos exposure. Those who are typically at risk of contracting the disease have either worked in the shipyard, construction, electrical, or automotive industry.

The test uses up-to-date molecular technologies for the processing and measuring of microRNAs. MicroRNAs, which are a newly-discovered family of genes in protein complexes, have been shown to be very specific to different types of tissues and tumors.

During the test, two separate scores are calculated to indicate the amount of mesothelioma and non-mesothelioma microRNAs in the sample. The scores are then analyzed to determine whether or not the sample is a mesothelioma or non-mesothelioma sample.

Although miRview™ meso is only being distributed to the public in Israel and Turkey, Rosetta Genomics has made the test commercially available to the United States through its Philadelphia-based CLIA-certified lab.

The test, which can only be ordered by a physician, simply requires a formalin-fixed, paraffin embedded (FFPE) tumor tissue sample to be shipped to Rosetta Genomics’ Philadelphia-based lab. Once the sample is received, results can be available within 10 business days.

This test is a critical breakthrough for diagnosing mesothelioma. Currently, there is no single marker that is entirely conclusive for either malignant mesothelioma or metastatic tumor, which often makes it difficult for physicians to make a complete diagnosis. However, Rosetta Genomics’ miRview™ meso test applies microRNA biomarkers and molecular technology to address this clinical need. High confidence cases have already shown 100 percent accuracy in determining the presence of mesothelioma.

Through the duration of 2009, Rosetta Genomics expects to conduct about 2,000 miRview™ meso tests in its laboratory in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Mesothelioma Cancer Treatment - Clinical Trials

Mesothelioma is a rare and severe type of cancer. The treatments available are not effective in treating the disease. This also arises partly from the fact that the disease is not well known. New methods and procedures need to be developed in order to improve the effectiveness of the treatment. Clinical trials are studies directed for the purpose to develop new treatments and to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of these new treatments.

There are basically four phases in a clinical trial and each phase has its goals. The phases are as follows:

Phase 1: This phase studies the safety and side effects of a new drug. It tries to determine the best way that this new drug is administered and tries to determine the appropriate dosage. It is important to state that not only new drugs are studied in a clinical trial but treatments such as surgery, radiation therapy and other treatments may also be studied. Before any treatment is tested on humans it has been already tested in the laboratory, usually on animals, but its side effects on humans will not accurately be determined until it is actually tested on them.

Phase 2: In this phase the treatment's effectiveness to fight mesothelioma will be studied and the treatment's safety will further be evaluated.

Phase 3: the new treatment is compared to existing treatments in order to study side effects and confirm its effectiveness.

Phase 4: Information is gathered in order to determine how an already approved treatment can be used to treat other diseases.

To be eligible for a clinical trial the patient should have certain characteristics. Eligibility depends on the stage of the disease, the age of the individual and many other factors. There are different types of clinical trials and eligibility is not the same for all. There is no guarantee that a clinical trial will produce the desired results. Further more the patient is obviously exposed to certain risks. Therefore it is very important that the patient talks with his physician and is well informed about the advantages and risks involved and the adequacy of clinical trial in his or her particular situation.

For more info go to Mesothelioma Cancer


Sunday, February 15, 2009

Good News for mesothelioma effected people

Good News for mesothelioma effected people
I have come through a beautiful site about mesothelioma.A place where you will get more details about the disease,treatment and more.
I accidentally went through this site and it kept me there for long searching most of its pages.They have the full information,yes they have.They will tell you the treatment and have other options for this disease like surgery and more.This is the best site i have ever seen online.

This site has got full information on mesothelioma lawyer which is bit difficult to get in other sites.They have a form to fill up so that you get a book in very short time to cure this disase.A best place to see.You wont regret it.This site has got a big list of mesothelioma lawyers for your service at any place in u.s.

This site will get you to mesothelioma attorney for the process.They have the best people to work with and its a great place.You will come to know that when you check this site.Iam really happy to see a site with all these informatio.

An easy to use site with out any complication makes this site more popular.Anyone can use this site with ease.If you want to know the latest news on mesothelioma then they have news place where you get the latest news on this disease.

A must to see site with all you need for a mesothelioma disease.

Financial Burden of Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma requires a lot of money for treatment. Professional fees for medical doctors, laboratory expenses and medicines need money. Since the patient is unable to earn an income because of his incapacity to work, all the more money is needed.

This dreadful disease exerts a lot of financial burden to the family. The main cause for this is the inhalation of asbestos fiber so the most likely candidates for this disease are those who work at asbestos mining sites and manufacturing plants which use asbestos as one of their raw materials.

The candidates for this disease are not only limited to the workers who come in contact with asbestos fibers but also to the family members. Asbestos fiber can stick to the clothes and when the worker goes home, asbestos dust can spread to the house.

The patient can consult a lawyer with regards to seeking compensation from the company he worked for. If a compensation cannot be arranged, the patient has every right to file a legal suit against the entity which is responsible for the mesothelioma. Inhalation from asbestos fibers can be prevented with pollution control and proper protective gadgets which the entity has obvious failed to observe.

This disease can go undetected for decades and by the time it is diagnosed, the advanced stage has taken place which leaves the patient for only a few more years to live. During those times, expenses for medical treatments rise without money coming in because the patient is unable to work.

It is necessary for people who are exposed to asbestos not to take for granted the symptoms which can be attributed to common illnesses such as difficulty in breathing or pain in the chest or stomach. If these symptoms occur, a visit to the physician for possible mesothelioma case should be considered. Early diagnosis can make treatments more effective.

Seeking legal aid to receive compensation is important to cover the medical expenses. Sustenance of the family members whose breadwinner may leave behind should also be considered when filing a legal suit. Your lawyer can discuss with you all possibilities for claiming compensation which you so rightly deserve.

Lawyers and attorneys specializing in mesothelioma cases can easily be found online. Just search for the phrase "mesothelioma lawyers" and you will find several lawyers from different locations. Find a lawyer near you after you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma before the statute of limitations will elapse.

This disease imposes so much pain not only for the patient but also to family members. Emotional and financial burden can beset the home making life very miserable. Easing the financial burden by seeking legal aid can contribute so much to alleviating the low spirit that can dominate the home.

Compensation can be acquired which can more than sustain the family members left behind. There are cases where millions can be received but it cannot surely replace the emotional burden and hardship of the family during the illness. Emotional stress from the loss of a loved one can extend for many years.

Learn more about what mesothelioma is and easily search for mesothelioma lawyers online if you need one.


Looking For an Experienced Mesothelioma Lawyer?

You may have recently found out that you or your loved one has mesothelioma, a kind of cancer that is acquired through the exposure to asbestos. When you inhaled asbestos fibers and it enters your lungs, it tears out the lung tissues and causes the growth of cancer cells. Some people may link smoking with mesothelioma but there really is no direct cause and effect relationship that exists between the two. What you should remember is that it may make your situation worse but it may not actually cause it. If you have this kind of disease, you should already engage in treatments and other medical sessions that would help you recover from it. You may also consider having a mesothelioma lawyer since the group that may have cause your exposure to asbestos may offer you settlement fees and this may be a big help in paying all your medical bills.

If you want to get a bigger amount of the settlement fee, you should be able to make your case stronger. You can do this through hiring a mesothelioma lawyer. With the use of the expertise and technical knowledge of a mesothelioma lawyer, you may make your case stronger and get a bigger amount from the company. Although the claims may vary from one situation to the other, you should also know that not all mesothelioma lawyers may help you out since there is a needed level of experience before a lawyer can make your case win. Also, you should consider that the generalized lawyers may not know other technical aspects of a mesothelioma case. Thus, it is still better that you hire a specialized mesothelioma lawyer to ensure that he is focused on your case and he knows what actions should be done best. With the specialized and experienced mesothelioma lawyer, you can feel more assured that he already had other experiences with the case so he already have an idea on what way should be done to make the case more favorable for you.

There are many mesothelioma lawyers that can handle your case. One individual may have an advantage over the other. You must then assure that you have checked out the qualifications of as many mesothelioma lawyers as possible. This is important so that you can select the one that can give you the best service. You will also have to check if you can talk to the mesothelioma lawyer that you are considering because a constant communication and understanding would be needed to ensure that both of you know what the goal of the case is. When the mesothelioma lawyer and the client is able to agree on the goal, the lawyer can now make the necessary actions to achieve the goals and the client would freely cooperate with the process.
When these considerations are kept in mind, having the right mesothelioma lawyer handling your case would then be an easy task. You will have to prepare for the case so that you will get the results that you need.

What Everybody Ought to Know about Florida Mesothelioma Lawyer: The tips, the benefits all the "how to" guides.


How to Find a Mesothelioma Attorney

Selecting the right mesothelioma lawyer can be a daunting task. In addition to the emotional strains and struggles you may be experiencing as a result of a mesothelioma diagnosis, it may feel like choosing an attorney for your legal case is too daunting. In this article we will explore how to find a mesothelioma attorney.

It is your responsibility and right to obtain the best legal advice you can when submitting a claim to the court for a mesothelioma negligence suit. Large sums of cash, potentially millions of dollars, are ultimately at stake and you don't want to be unprepared for a case of this magnitude. The right attorney could, and probably will, impact the final settlement you are able to receive.

Experience in mesothelioma cases should be your first prerequisite. As a result of the substantial settlement payouts for the kind of case, the legal industry has seen a surge in lawyers looking to work on mesothelioma cases. Therefore, it is possible that some of the attorneys in the field are looking for a fast buck and don't posses the necessary resources to conduct a proper campaign in this area of the law.

It is also important to examine the legal firms fee structure. It is common today for mesothelioma attorneys to operate of a contingency basis. What this means is that the attorney is only compensated if and when you are awarded financial compensation as the result of this case. This type of fee structure ensures that you will never be stuck with extensive legal bills if the case is not decided in your favor.

Find more extensive information on what is mesothelioma as well as resources for mesothelioma injury at my website.


Treatments for Mesothelioma Under Investigation

Treatments for Mesothelioma Under Investigation

Researchers continually find ways to treat diseases that seem counter-intuitive to the rest of us. There are hundreds of clinical trials underway at any given time. Clinical trials are research programs that are approved for trial on humans. These trials are restricted to people who meet inclusion and exclusion criteria for that specific study. Clinical trials conducted through four trial phases, each involving a larger number of participants. The fourth phase is a post marketing study.

Several clinical trials are using gene therapy to stimulate immune responses in humans. One treatment in Phase I involves injecting a dose of a gene therapy involving a virus thymidine kinase into the intrapleural space (between the two pleural mesothelial membranes that line the lungs and ribcage) twice daily for 3 days. This treatment showed sufficient promise in the treatment of pleural mesothelioma to recommend it for Phase II testing. Several other gene therapy trials by different groups of researchers use variations of gene therapy with promising results. These trials involved patients with localized pleural mesothelioma.

A double-blind study in Phase II Trial will compare the results of administering the combination of Gemcitabine and Cisplatin with, and without Bevacizumab, a drug that inhibits the growth of blood vessels that can nourish new cancer cells in the hope that the tumor will shrink.

Pemetrexed combined with Cisplatin was compared to Cisplatin alone in a Phase III trial involving patients with metastatic pleural mesothelioma (MPM). The combination of both drugs with the addition of vitamin B12 and folic acid “resulted in superior survival time, time to progression, and response rates…” Adding the vitamins reduced toxicity.

Another study in Phase I involves Pemetrexed and Carboplatin in patients with MPM. During Phase I some of the patients experienced toxicity related to the dosage, however, 70% of the patients experienced improvement in their symptoms after only two courses of treatment. Time to progression was delayed 305 days (about ten months) and median survival time 451 days (about fifteen months.)

Photodynamic therapy is another approach that is currently being studied. Patients are pretreated with light-sensitive molecules that cause the cancer cells to become sensitive to light. During surgery, these cells are exposed to light of a specific wavelength. Though there have been positive results, this treatment also requires more study.

In comparison, the patients who qualified for these clinical trials had a life expectancy of six to nine months at the time they entered the trials. While there is still a long way to go, scientists are working to find the key to curing mesothelioma. In the past surgery was done as a palliative treatment.

Fifteen years ago researchers were hopeful that surgery combined with chemotherapy, radiation therapy would provide more significant results than each give separately. Today, therapy combining surgery with chemotherapy, photodynamic therapy and gene therapy are producing encouraging results.

You may be entitled to compensation if you have received a diagnosis of mesothelioma or asbestosis. Please visit the website of Parker, Dumler & Kiely, LLP, the experienced mesothelioma lawyers in Baltimore, Maryland and Washington, D.C.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Mesothelioma and Asbestos Awareness Center: February 4, 2009 is World Cancer Day

Mesothelioma and Asbestos Awareness Center: February 4, 2009 is World Cancer Day

The World Health Organization, along with other cancer-related groups, encourage people worldwide to donate to cancer research today

Syracuse, NY 2/04/2009 04:42 PM GMT (FINDITT)

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) at least 84 million individuals worldwide will lose their battle with some form of cancer by the year 2015. The number of people who die from cancer each year, according to WHO, could be far more than 14 million worldwide unless more funding is allocated to important cancer research.

WHO, along with the International Union Against Cancer, has named February 4th of each year as a day for world citizens to not only donate to cancer research, but also to educate themselves about cancer in general.

Here in the United States, the American Cancer Society (ACS) reports that approximately 1,437,180 people died from cancer in 2008. Florida, California, Texas, and New York had the highest number of cancer-related deaths in the nation, while Wyoming had the smallest number of related deaths. Despite these discouraging statistics, the ACS also reports that, as of 2004, there were an estimated 10.8 million cancer survivors living in our country. The encouraging survival rates are attributed to advances in cancer treatment methods and an increase in individuals who detected their cancer early.

Unfortunately, Americans who are diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma cancer do not generally receive such encouraging information about their treatment and survival. Mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer caused exclusively by previous exposure to asbestos, does not have a cure. Almost all mesothelioma sufferers will lose their battle with this disease in less than two years following their diagnosis, and mesothelioma treatment methods are essentially a temporary means of controlling pain and symptoms associated with the disease.

Mesothelioma is not a problem limited to the United States, however. In India, for example, the rate of mesothelioma and other asbestos-caused diseases is incredibly high, and the number of individuals diagnosed with these illnesses continues to rise. India imports 43% of the world’s asbestos, almost exclusively from Canada, and the country has very loose asbestos safety regulations.

World Cancer Day is an ideal time for all citizens worldwide to take the time to educate themselves about different types of cancer and the risk factors associated with each. It is also a day to donate to cancer research. The options for donating are virtually endless. Those interested in donating to mesothelioma cancer-specific treatment research may wish to consider giving to the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute. For information about their organization, please visit their website at or send them an email at

What is Pleural Mesothelioma?

What is Pleural Mesothelioma?

Pleural Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that is most often found in people who have, at some point during their lives been exposed to high levels of asbestos. Asbestos is a type of naturally occurring mineral that was, for many years mixed with cement, plaster and paint and used in the interiors of houses. It was used as it is highly resistant to heat and is surprisingly strong. Unfortunately asbestos is made up of thin fibres which have since been found to be highly toxic to humans when they get into the body and it is these fibres that can be breathed in and cause a large number of health problems.

Due to the way that asbestos acts once inside the body it is usually many years later that asbestos related Pleural Mesothelioma is noticed. Pleural Mesothelioma is normally diagnosed when there is a change in the thin layer of membranes that are in the chest. When this pleural lining thickens or starts to calcify it is known as pleural plaques. These plaques in themselves are not always a definite precursor to cancer but they can greatly affect the function of the lungs and they can signal the start of Pleural Mesothelioma.

Pleural Mesothelioma may begin in the pleura but it can soon radiate outwards to the abdomen, the heart and the outer wall of the chest. When this happens and a diagnosis of Pleural Mesothelioma is made the prognosis is not good and many patients with Pleural Mesothelioma are not expected to live much longer than 12 months or so. With this in mind it is critical that anyone who has had previous exposure to asbestos is regularly tested for any changes in the pleura as this is an early sign that Pleural Mesothelioma could be imminent. When Pleural Mesothelioma is suspected early enough the patient can be treated and this can help them to live much longer than someone who has been diagnosed with full blown Pleural Mesothelioma.

Some of the symptoms of Pleural Mesothelioma are pain in the lower back, shortness of breath and pain towards the side of the chest. Some people may have problems when swallowing, have a cough that will not go away and in some cases a patient might even be coughing up blood. Some people also find that they start to lose weight quite rapidly once the disease sets in.

As the outlook for a person with Pleural Mesothelioma is not good as treatment can be quite limited due to the aggressive nature of the disease. If the disease is caught quickly enough surgery can help to remove the pleura that are affected and the patient will live for longer than someone with advanced Pleural Mesothelioma. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy are also options that some doctors will use to further extend the life of their patient but this does need to be carefully considered. Painkillers are used to keep the patient as comfortable as possible and other complimentary therapies can be used.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Weitz & Luxenberg Asbestos Lawyers and Mesothelioma Lawyers Among the Best

Weitz & Luxenberg Asbestos Lawyers and Mesothelioma Lawyers Among the Best

Asbestos lawyers and mesothelioma lawyers at the law firm of Weitz & Luxenberg were recognized as being among the “Best Lawyers in New York” in 2008 by New York Magazine. The firm is proud to announce that it received this distinction in previous years as well. The repeated inclusion of the firm in the list of distinguished lawyers attests to the firm’s commitment to excellence.

Inclusion in the list of “Best Lawyers” is based on votes by other lawyers. Thus, the list reflects the judgment of a substantial number of lawyers. According to New York Magazine, the “Best Lawyers” list “remains the gold standard of reliability and integrity in lawyer ratings.”

The law firm of Weitz & Luxenberg has been successful in handling a wide variety of personal injury cases since its founding in 1986. The firm however, specializes in asbestos and mesothelioma cases. Weitz & Luxenberg’s asbestos lawyers and mesothelioma lawyers are the leaders in asbestos cases. Unlike other law firms that claim to handle mesothelioma cases but actually, refer those cases to other law firms, Weitz & Luxenberg lawyers work on mesothelioma cases on their own from start to finish. Weitz & Luxenberg’s asbestos lawyers and mesothelioma lawyers are nationally recognized as the leading lawyers in asbestos cases. The firm has had and continues to have outstanding success in mesothelioma cases.

The asbestos lawyers of Weitz & Luxenberg advise the public to carefully consider which law firm it hires to handle their mesothelioma case. Hiring the wrong law firm can lead to a costly defeat. Before hiring an asbestos lawyer or a mesothelioma lawyer, one should inquire about the following:
Will the lawyer actually work on the asbestos case or simply refer it to another lawyer?
What kind of verdicts and settlements has the lawyer won in asbestos cases?
How much experience does the lawyer have with asbestos cases?

Weitz & Luxenberg’s asbestos lawyers and mesothelioma lawyers have the skill to work on asbestos cases from beginning to end. Weitz & Luxenberg’s asbestos lawyers and mesothelioma lawyers have won some of the highest verdicts and settlements in asbestos cases. Finally, Weitz & Luxenberg’s asbestos lawyers and mesothelioma lawyers have been specializing in asbestos cases for over two decades.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Mesothelioma Mess

Have you ever realized that with asbestos being used all around us, we might be inhaling a potential source of cancer 24/7? Occupational exposure to asbestos has been found to be associated with a life threatening disease called mesothelioma.

About 2,000 new cases of mesothelioma are diagnosed in the United States each year.Themedguru explores the different aspects associated with malignant mesothelioma and its possible cure.

Explaining the Term Mesothelium

The mesothelium is a membrane that covers and protects your internal organs. It also secretes a lubricating fluid that allows your organs to glide through adjacent structures. It is due to this membrane that your heart can breathe and lungs expand and contract, all at the same time.

The mesothelium is known by different names depending upon its location in the body. The mesothelial membrane covering most organs in the abdominal cavity is called peritoneum, while that covering the lungs and the walls of the chest cavity is called the pleura.

What Is Malignant Mesothelioma

Malignant mesothelioma or simply mesothelioma is a type of cancerdefine that affects the mesothelium. When a person’s mesothelium gets malignant, it begins to grow uncontrollably, thus causing damage to the nearby organs. Cancer cells can also spread to the other parts of the body from its site of origin. Usually, mesothelioma originates in either the peritoneum or the pleura.

Role Played by Asbestos in Causing Mesothelioma

Asbestos is the culprit behind causing malignant mesothelioma. The first commercial use of asbestos began in the early 19th century. It was during World War II, when its commercial use increased by many folds. It was during this time that millions of commercial workers all over the world started being exposed to asbestos dust, grossly unaware of its ill effects and its potential of causing cancer.

The passage of time revealed the risks associated with asbestos when workers from asbestos mines, mills, producers of asbestos products, workers in the heating and construction industries and other trades people started developing certain common symptoms, which subsequently resulted into mesothelioma.

Symptoms of Mesothelioma

The problem with mesothelioma is that, after being exposed to asbestos dust it takes around 30 to 50 years for its symptoms to surface. The symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma may include:
• weight loss
• abdominal paindefine
• swelling due to a buildup of fluid in the abdomendefine
• bowel obstruction
• blood clotting abnormalities
• fever

The symptoms of pleura mesothelioma include shortness of breath and pain in the chest due to an accumulation of fluid in the pleura. If the mesothelioma spreads to the other parts of the body, its symptoms might include pain, trouble swallowing, or swelling of the neck or face.

Detection of the Disease

The very fact that the symptoms of mesothelioma are quite similar to that of scores of other diseases, diagnosis of the disease becomes all the more difficult. Your doctor might be interested in knowing the history of the ailment and if an association with asbestos comes to the forefront, he might be required to carry out a thorough check up. The conformation of a malignant mesothelium can be made only through a biopsy.

If at all a biopsy confirms malignancy, the doctor would like to know how far it has spread which will also reveal the stage of cancer. Depending upon the stage, the doctor would like to advice a suitable treatment.

Mesothelioma Treatment

The treatment prescribed by a doctor would depend upon many factors such as the location of the cancer, stage of cancer, the patient’s age and his general health. The doctor might then select one or a combination of the following treatment options:
• Radiationdefine therapy
• Chemotherapy
• Surgery

In addition, your doc might also be required to drain out the fluid that has built up within your chest or abdominal cavity. For this, he could make use of a needle or a thin tube.

Prevention of Mesothelioma

In certain cases, the family members of asbestos workers have also developed the ailment, primarily due to the asbestos dust brought home through the clothes and hair of the workers. Today, it has been made mandatory for all workers to shower and change clothes before leaving for home. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has also established strict limits for determining the maximum level of asbestos in a workplace. Those exposed to asbestos are also required to wear certain protective equipments to lower the risk of cancer.

Considering the fact that several asbestos manufacturing companies kept toying with their hazardous produce and floating it irresponsibly in the open market in spite of being fully aware of their potential risks, makes them criminals in the eyes of law. If you are also a victim of this selfish act, you have a right to approach the court of law and demand for compensation. Although the compensation will never be able to get back your lost health, it could be of help to you in more than one way….for sure.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Causes for mesothelioma cancer

The causes of mesothelioma have been under study for several decades. It is estimated that nine out of ten cases of mesothelioma are caused by exposure to asbestos, the mineral which was once widely used in construction materials, brake pad linings, and hundreds of other products found in everyday life. Other possible but as yet unproven causes of mesothelioma cancer are discussed below.

Genetic Mutation of Cells

According to the Mayo Clinic, the causes of mesothelioma can be traced to the genetic mutation that turns healthy cells into cancer cells. These abnormal cells multiply randomly and don't die as normal cells do. The accumulation of cancer cells forms a tumor, which can invade other body tissues and spread further through the body.

It's not yet known what causes the genetic mutation that leads to the cancer mesothelioma, and the interaction of several factors appears to affect its incidence:

· Inherited conditions
· A given individual's environment
· Overall health
· Lifestyle choices such as smoking

Asbestos Exposure Initiates Mutation

This genetic mutation can apparently be initiated when asbestos fibers lodge in the lungs or other internal organs. Some 2,000 to 3,000 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer each year in the United States alone. Nearly all of these unfortunate individuals have asbestos exposure in their history. However, a complete determination of the exact causes of mesothelioma is desirable and would be very helpful in the fight to find a cure for this devastating disease.
A Nationwide Study of the Causes of Mesothelioma

A large-scale research and clinical study with the purpose of finding out more about the causes of mesothelioma is being conducted in the United Kingdom. This "National Study of Occupation and Lung Diseases" is designed to more closely identify causes of mesothelioma among the thousands of victims in the UK, and the results will shed light on causes of mesothelioma in individuals all over the world.
Other Causes of Mesothelioma Cancer

In studies using animals, the Simian virus (SV40) was found to cause mesothelioma. Some polio vaccines given during the mid-1950s to the early 1960s were found to be contaminated with SV40, but no definitive link between SV40 and mesothelioma has been established.

In contrast, there are a handful of documented cases of mesothelioma in patients who underwent x-ray imaging that used thorium dioxide. These x-rays have not been in use for many years because of the link between thorium dioxide and cancer.

If you are concerned about the causes of mesothelioma in someone you know, contact mesothelioma treatment center for more information.

Investigation finds many schools contain asbestos

Investigation finds many schools contain asbestos

Most state school buildings in South East England contain asbestos, according to an investigation.

The BBC's Inside Out programme revealed the potentially-deadly material remains in more than 90 per cent of schools.

Kent, Medway, Sussex, Brighton and Surrey councils all revealed a high proportion of properties affected.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) said it would be dangerous to remove asbestos sealed inside buildings.

However, John Walder, secretary of the NUT Kent branch, said: "The NUT's view is quite clear, we think that the solution is the complete removal of asbestos from all the working spaces.

"As long as local authorities do not remove asbestos from a site, there will be a risk of fibres getting into the atmosphere and getting into people's lungs."

Dr Robin Howie, an independent asbestos consultant, said the number of teachers dying of asbestos-related diseases in the UK had risen from about one every two years to more than five a year.

He said:"We are looking at a substantially higher number of mesothelioma deaths in teachers than we would expect.

"What it means is that teacher mesotheliomas are important because they are the tip of the iceberg. And that iceberg are the mesotheliomas in children."

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Mesothelioma Symptoms

Mesothelioma Symptoms
Mesothelioma symptoms are not specific to the disease; that is, many mesothelioma symptoms are also symptoms of other medical problems.Most studies show that the symptoms of mesotheliomausually begin to appear 30 to 40 years after exposure to asbestos. Thus, many mesothelioma patients are unaware that the symptoms they are experiencing are related to something that happened much earlier in their lives. Even a short period of asbestos exposure (as little as a few months) can create the conditions for a disease that erupts much later in life.
Mesothelioma affects the lining of various cavities in the body. Over time, the growth of cancerous tumors causes these tissues to expand and gather fluid. The presence of excess fluid is typically what causes the symptoms to occur. Mesothelioma symptoms also depend on the location of the tumors.

Pleural Mesothelioma Symptoms
For pleural mesothelioma, or mesothelioma of the lining surrounding the lung, common symptoms include shortness of breath, chest pain and a persistent cough. Unfortunately, these symptoms are also very common for a number of other ailments, including pneumonia. The most common symptom is localized chest pain, but this may not occur until the disease is well advanced. A less common but still prevalent symptom of pleural mesothelioma is weight loss. Some patients show virtually no symptoms.

Peritoneal Mesothelioma Symptoms
Peritoneal mesothelioma is a cancer of the abdominal lining. Symptoms include swelling or a mass in the abdomen, weight loss and abdominal pain. Bowel obstruction and blood clots also have been known to occur and fever is sometimes present.

Pericardial Mesothelioma Symptoms
Pericardial mesothelioma affects the lining of the heart, or pericardium. Symptoms include chest pain, cough, irregular heart beat and irregular breathing patterns. Many of these symptoms manifest during physical exertion – even minimal exertion. Pericardial mesothelioma is the rarest type of mesothelioma.

The earlier cancer is detected – mesothelioma or otherwise – the more effective treatment aimed at halting its progression will be.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Mesothelioma: Questions and Answers

Mesothelioma: Questions and Answers
Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer in which malignant (cancerous) cells are found in the mesothelium, a protective sac that covers most of the body's internal organs. Most people who develop mesothelioma have worked on jobs where they inhaled asbestos particles.

1.What is the mesothelium?

The mesothelium is a membrane that covers and protects most of the internal organs of the body. It is composed of two layers of cells: One layer immediately surrounds the organ; the other forms a sac around it. The mesothelium produces a lubricating fluid that is released between these layers, allowing moving organs (such as the beating heart and the expanding and contracting lungs) to glide easily against adjacent structures.

The mesothelium has different names, depending on its location in the body. The peritoneum is the mesothelial tissue that covers most of the organs in the abdominal cavity. The pleura is the membrane that surrounds the lungs and lines the wall of the chest cavity. The pericardium covers and protects the heart. The mesothelial tissue surrounding the male internal reproductive organs is called the tunica vaginalis testis. The tunica serosa uteri covers the internal reproductive organs in women.

2.What is mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma (cancer of the mesothelium) is a disease in which cells of the mesothelium become abnormal and divide without control or order. They can invade and damage nearby tissues and organs. Cancer cells can also metastasize (spread) from their original site to other parts of the body. Most cases of mesothelioma begin in the pleura or peritoneum.

3.How common is mesothelioma?

Although reported incidence rates have increased in the past 20 years, mesothelioma is still a relatively rare cancer. About 2,000 new cases of mesothelioma are diagnosed in the United States each year. Mesothelioma occurs more often in men than in women and risk increases with age, but this disease can appear in either men or women at any age.

4.What are the risk factors for mesothelioma?

Working with asbestos is the major risk factor for mesothelioma. A history of asbestos exposure at work is reported in about 70 percent to 80 percent of all cases. However, mesothelioma has been reported in some individuals without any known exposure to asbestos.

Asbestos is the name of a group of minerals that occur naturally as masses of strong, flexible fibers that can be separated into thin threads and woven. Asbestos has been widely used in many industrial products, including cement, brake linings, roof shingles, flooring products, textiles, and insulation. If tiny asbestos particles float in the air, especially during the manufacturing process, they may be inhaled or swallowed, and can cause serious health problems. In addition to mesothelioma, exposure to asbestos increases the risk of lung cancer, asbestosis (a noncancerous, chronic lung ailment), and other cancers, such as those of the larynx and kidney.

Smoking does not appear to increase the risk of mesothelioma. However, the combination of smoking and asbestos exposure significantly increases a person's risk of developing cancer of the air passageways in the lung.

5.Who is at increased risk for developing mesothelioma?

Asbestos has been mined and used commercially since the late 1800s. Its use greatly increased during World War II. Since the early 1940s, millions of American workers have been exposed to asbestos dust. Initially, the risks associated with asbestos exposure were not known. However, an increased risk of developing mesothelioma was later found among shipyard workers, people who work in asbestos mines and mills, producers of asbestos products, workers in the heating and construction industries, and other tradespeople. Today, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets limits for acceptable levels of asbestos exposure in the workplace. People who work with asbestos wear personal protective equipment to lower their risk of exposure.

The risk of asbestos-related disease increases with heavier exposure to asbestos and longer exposure time. However, some individuals with only brief exposures have developed mesothelioma. On the other hand, not all workers who are heavily exposed develop asbestos-related diseases.

There is some evidence that family members and others living with asbestos workers have an increased risk of developing mesothelioma, and possibly other asbestos-related diseases. This risk may be the result of exposure to asbestos dust brought home on the clothing and hair of asbestos workers. To reduce the chance of exposing family members to asbestos fibers, asbestos workers are usually required to shower and change their clothing before leaving the workplace.

6.What are the symptoms of mesothelioma?

Symptoms of mesothelioma may not appear until 30 to 50 years after exposure to asbestos. Shortness of breath and pain in the chest due to an accumulation of fluid in the pleura are often symptoms of pleural mesothelioma. Symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma include weight loss and abdominal pain and swelling due to a buildup of fluid in the abdomen. Other symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma may include bowel obstruction, blood clotting abnormalities, anemia, and fever. If the cancer has spread beyond the mesothelium to other parts of the body, symptoms may include pain, trouble swallowing, or swelling of the neck or face.

These symptoms may be caused by mesothelioma or by other, less serious conditions. It is important to see a doctor about any of these symptoms. Only a doctor can make a diagnosis.

7.How is mesothelioma diagnosed?

Diagnosing mesothelioma is often difficult, because the symptoms are similar to those of a number of other conditions. Diagnosis begins with a review of the patient's medical history, including any history of asbestos exposure. A complete physical examination may be performed, including x-rays of the chest or abdomen and lung function tests. A CT (or CAT) scan or an MRI may also be useful. A CT scan is a series of detailed pictures of areas inside the body created by a computer linked to an x-ray machine. In an MRI, a powerful magnet linked to a computer is used to make detailed pictures of areas inside the body. These pictures are viewed on a monitor and can also be printed.

A biopsy is needed to confirm a diagnosis of mesothelioma. In a biopsy, a surgeon or a medical oncologist (a doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating cancer) removes a sample of tissue for examination under a microscope by a pathologist. A biopsy may be done in different ways, depending on where the abnormal area is located. If the cancer is in the chest, the doctor may perform a thoracoscopy. In this procedure, the doctor makes a small cut through the chest wall and puts a thin, lighted tube called a thoracoscope into the chest between two ribs. Thoracoscopy allows the doctor to look inside the chest and obtain tissue samples. If the cancer is in the abdomen, the doctor may perform a peritoneoscopy. To obtain tissue for examination, the doctor makes a small opening in the abdomen and inserts a special instrument called a peritoneoscope into the abdominal cavity. If these procedures do not yield enough tissue, more extensive diagnostic surgery may be necessary.

If the diagnosis is mesothelioma, the doctor will want to learn the stage (or extent) of the disease. Staging involves more tests in a careful attempt to find out whether the cancer has spread and, if so, to which parts of the body. Knowing the stage of the disease helps the doctor plan treatment.

Mesothelioma is described as localized if the cancer is found only on the membrane surface where it originated. It is classified as advanced if it has spread beyond the original membrane surface to other parts of the body, such as the lymph nodes, lungs, chest wall, or abdominal organs.

8.How is mesothelioma treated?

Treatment for mesothelioma depends on the location of the cancer, the stage of the disease, and the patient's age and general health. Standard treatment options include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. Sometimes, these treatments are combined.

Surgery is a common treatment for mesothelioma. The doctor may remove part of the lining of the chest or abdomen and some of the tissue around it. For cancer of the pleura (pleural mesothelioma), a lung may be removed in an operation called a pneumonectomy. Sometimes part of the diaphragm, the muscle below the lungs that helps with breathing, is also removed.

Radiation therapy, also called radiotherapy, involves the use of high-energy rays to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. Radiation therapy affects the cancer cells only in the treated area. The radiation may come from a machine (external radiation) or from putting materials that produce radiation through thin plastic tubes into the area where the cancer cells are found (internal radiation therapy).

Chemotherapy is the use of anticancer drugs to kill cancer cells throughout the body. Most drugs used to treat mesothelioma are given by injection into a vein (intravenous, or IV). Doctors are also studying the effectiveness of putting chemotherapy directly into the chest or abdomen (intracavitary chemotherapy).

To relieve symptoms and control pain, the doctor may use a needle or a thin tube to drain fluid that has built up in the chest or abdomen. The procedure for removing fluid from the chest is called thoracentesis. Removal of fluid from the abdomen is called paracentesis. Drugs may be given through a tube in the chest to prevent more fluid from accumulating. Radiation therapy and surgery may also be helpful in relieving symptoms.

9.Are new treatments for mesothelioma being studied?

Yes. Because mesothelioma is very hard to control, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) is sponsoring clinical trials (research studies with people) that are designed to find new treatments and better ways to use current treatments. Before any new treatment can be recommended for general use, doctors conduct clinical trials to find out whether the treatment is safe for patients and effective against the disease. Participation in clinical trials is an important treatment option for many patients with mesothelioma.

People interested in taking part in a clinical trial should talk with their doctor. Information about clinical trials is available from the Cancer Information Service (CIS) (see below) at 1–800–4–CANCER. Information specialists at the CIS use PDQ®, NCI's cancer information database, to identify and provide detailed information about specific ongoing clinical trials. Patients also have the option of searching for clinical trials on their own. The clinical trials page on the NCI's Web site, located at on the Internet, provides general information about clinical trials and links to PDQ.

People considering clinical trials may be interested in the NCI booklet Taking Part in Cancer Treatment Research Studies. This booklet describes how research studies are carried out and explains their possible benefits and risks. The booklet is available by calling the CIS, or from the NCI Publications Locator Web site at on the Internet.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Mesothelioma Treatment Gets Boost with New Diagnostic Test

Mesothelioma Treatment Gets Boost with New Diagnostic Test
Israeli-based MicroRNA company, Rosetta Genomics, has made a giant leap in cancer diagnosis by announcing the commercial availability of its third diagnostic test, miRview (TM) meso.

This breakthrough marks the first molecularly-based test that can accurately diagnose mesothelioma from other types of cancers found in the lung.

MicroRNAs are recently-discovered RNAs that consist of a chain of nucleotide units, each made of a nitrogenous base, a ribose sugar and a phosphate. Although similar to DNA, RNA is single-stranded, while DNA is double-stranded. MicroRNAs provide the ability to treat and diagnose a variety of human illnesses and conditions.

One of the most devastating types of asbestos-related disease is known as malignant mesothelioma, a fatal lung ailment that is directly linked to asbestos exposure. One of the most difficult tasks for physicians that treat mesothelioma is diagnosing the illness, making the test especially important to treating the disease at an early stage of development.

Diagnosis of the disease does not typically occur until the later stages of development have been reached, equating to a poor patient prognosis. Symptoms and warning signs of mesothelioma typically include shortness of breath, chest pain and weight loss, resembling symptoms felt by other less serious conditions. Most individuals who develop mesothelioma contract the disease through occupational exposure where they inhaled airborne asbestos fibers were exposed to asbestos dust through other means while on the job.

Rosetta Genomics is one of the world’s leading developers of microRNA-based diagnostic tools that offer patients and physicians an objective method of identifying many types of cancer. The company believes that using microRNAs as biomarkers in the development of diagnostic tools will enable several advantages over other methods.

“Ruling out mesothelioma from lung cancer for individuals that were exposed to asbestos can be difficult and challenging,” noted Harvey Pass, MD, Division Chief for Thoracic Surgery and Oncology at the New York University Langone Medical Center.

The hope of early cancer detection for asbestos victims is to increase survival rates and address significant needs in the medical field for the next century. Rosetta Genomics’ efforts in leading the development of microRNA-based diagnostic tools will hopefully continue to advance future patient care and management.

“I am sure that this test will become an important tool for both oncologists and pathologists in obtaining the right diagnosis in these patients,” Pass said.

For more information on mesothelioma treatment, visit the Mesothelioma Cancer Center.