Steady increase predicted in cases of mesothelioma


A recent report on mesothelioma, an asbestos related cancer, suggests that rates of the disease in the UK will increase for another decade or more.

Asbestos Mesothelioma

The study by the Baird Institute looked at the causes and distribution of mesothelioma, and made predictions on future illness rates.


Mesothelioma is an aggressive and sadly, often fatal cancer of the covering of the lungs or abdomen. This covering is called the mesothelium.

The study showed that the average time from being exposed to asbestos, to being diagnosed with mesothelioma, was over 40 years. This delay is possibly a reason why there is a predicted rise in people being diagnosed with the disease, with poor measures in place to protect people from asbestos until the 1990’s.

The risks

Mesothelioma is commonly considered an industrial disease issue, with the majority of cases involving people who have been exposed to asbestos at work, and then being diagnosed later in life. It is usually tradesmen who have worked in the building and construction industry who are at risk. Every week on average 20 tradesmen die from exposure to asbestos.

However, the study found an increase in incidents involving second hand contact, with examples such as exposure from a spouse’s work clothes. This means that not only those who work around asbestos are at risk, but their family and friends too.

While being exposed to asbestos on a regular basis increases the risk of asbestos related illnesses, such as mesothelioma, you only need to be exposed to it once to be at risk.

Getting legal advice

If you think you have been exposed to asbestos, or have been diagnosed with an asbestos related illness, you may have a claim for compensation against those who exposed you to it. It is important to seek legal advice. The time limit for making a claim is 3 years from the date you were diagnosed with an illness. If you are considering making a claim for someone who has passed away, you have 3 years from the date of their death.

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